A Game of "I Spy" in the Tide Pools
29.03.2013 67 °F
There were two important items on The Kid's agenda for this California trip...1) go to the beach and 2) see tide pools. When I was a kid, we would visit my Grandparents in Concord and every once in a while, we would go to the northern CA beaches in Carmel, Monterrey, and Morro Bay. I remember seeing starfish, crabs, mussels, urchins and other tidal dwellers. I just knew the kid would love seeing what I saw, and again, I was absolutely thrilled with the real-life experiences that reinforce his book learning.
Our friends with whom we were staying suggested a trip to La Jolla Cove for optimal tide pool viewing. The Kid was giddy when we told him we were on our way to the beach. I wondered how enthusiastic he would be when he dipped his toes in the chilly water. My Arizona boy is accustomed to 80+ degree water and his most recent beach experience was in the Caribbean. California is not the Caribbean. I, of course, froze. 72 degrees is my threshold. Anything below that and I need my winter gear. The Kid on the other hand, saw the waves and jumped right in. No hesitation. Even when his teeth were chattering he swore he was not ready to leave, or even get out of the water.
After romping in the surf for a while, we explored the rocks and pools in search of life. We mostly saw little barnacles and other bivalves clinging to the rocks. No Starfish.
The Kid dove in, up to his neck in the frigid ocean, and found a school of minnows.
He climbed the rocks of the cove, in and around a cave, and discovered some species of anemone. That was exciting.
But most thrilling for him was when he saw a little pink crab scurrying along the sand.
When he saw all that there was to see, he returned to the shore to brace himself against the waves. He was joined by some body surfers further out and a playful seal who ventured very near the beachgoers. That was fun.
I watched my boys play and was grateful that The Daddy was such a good sport to endure the cold water with The Kid.
I just got to observe and relax and warm my toes in the sand.
The Kid's tide pool experience was not quite what I remember, but a worthwhile memory all the same.