I stood on the slightly warm grainy, yet soft sand as I faced the calm crashing of the loose small waves. The mysterious light that radiated off the moon, showed me the promise which the night holds. The clouds escaped my sight for just this one night to show me the beauty of the twinkling ball of fire in the midnight colored sky. Silence mixed with the soft roll of the ocean permeated the area around me. The breeze danced through my hair, and cupped my face, while it filled my nose with the strong stench of salt air.
The salt air was strong enough that I could taste the heavy mass in my mouth. My brown eyes scanned the beach line for any sign of movement for I was searching for baby sea turtles. It was dark, and although the moon’s rays were present, a red tinted flashlight was my only true guide in the peaceful night. Since sea turtles can’t see into the red spectrum, and normal white light will distort distort their destination, I tapped a thin piece of red film, so I wouldn’t harm him in any way. I smiled into the darkness, trying to keep hope.
The last two nest I have visited hatched before I could get there. Only one last nest remained and the hope of seeing a nest was escaping. The night before, multiple nests had erupted and brought forth new sea turtles into the world. I wish I’d see every little shell shaped body scramble to the ocean, eager to start their life adventure. Those tiny innocent creatures known as sea turtles are such interesting creatures, in my opinion, so it would be a shame to miss this opportunity. My legs were already starting to fall off from walking so much. They felt like heavy bars of lead.
It felt as if I had been walking all day long. My eyes were getting heavier than fifty bags of flour were pulling them down, but I would pushed forward until I saw the little innocent beautiful creatures. I let out a long, yet quiet sigh and sat on the dampish sand. The miniature cage, which protects and marks the nest, sat beside me, and the long stretch of runway lay before the small box of wire. The runway was two stretches of thin confined sturdy rubber in a perfect parallel symmetrical position held up by the sand, which helps direct the baby turtles to their new home.
The sand between the runway was decorated with the tiny flipper prints that spiraled to the direction of the ocean. The pang of guilt hit me with a sudden force at the realization that this was the last nest. I was too late. I felt the guilt, shame, anger, and despair eat away at me. If only I visited this nest first, I would’ve seen it. If only I was faster, I would’ve gotten here faster. I laid on the bare sand while I felt the sand trying to intermingle with my hair. The broken bits of shell pricked my bare skin, yet not causing any damage or pain.
I stared up into the warm summer’s night sky. After thirty minutes, which felt like long, dragging, and wasted hours, I heard the soft sensitive displacement of sand. I stole a glance from the cage. My heart almost plummeted out of my chest, and my fingertips became anesthetized from ravishment at the sight. The pulverised rock chunks were boiling with baby sea turtles breaking the surface. I felt as if I was trapped in this invisible bubble that hosted a convention of elation. Babies popped out of the sand one by one, like tiny black blobs being born from the tan summer snow.
The babies flopped, flipped, and clammered out of the grasp of the earth. Seven escaped the midst of the underground realm. Thier tracks covered the ones that were left behind by their siblings who abandoned them for the pleasure of being free. These must’ve been the turtles that were stuck at the bottom of the abyss-like nest, while they pleaded for their brothers and sisters to wait for them. The sea turtles’ flippers carved dips and twirls into the delicate top layer of sand, which gave it an elaborate design.
I watched them struggle across the sand, knowing it would be etter not to help, so they could gain the strength they needed to survive in the ocean. Again, I smiled into the darkness as watched the harsh waves flip the dark moving spots like hamburgers patties. I got to see it! I got to see the first step of the long journey sea turtles endure! Excitement and relief flooded every inch of my pale and tired body. The feeling of ascending on the overindulgent velvety cloud could not compare to what I felt. I knew then to not be so quickly to scold myself, and be patient with something that I can’t control.