A Walk Down the Ocean

 /   /  By Emma Birches
Stone Soup Magazine
September/October 2012

Abby Lustig
A Walk Down the Ocean seeing a dalphin

It was a dolphin!

My feet slapped against the wet sand, and waves lapped at my toes. White umbrellas blossomed like flowers all over the beach, teetering and threatening to fall down in the salty ocean breeze. I crossed over to the dry, sugar-powdered sand, and I could hear my heart pounding as I sprinted through mounds of shells. Colorful sun hats bobbed in the big, salty ocean and popped in and out of the rolling waves.

The rough rocks felt tough against my bare feet as I clambered over them, headed toward the ocean. Sea foam clung to the grainy sand, and heaps of beautifully detailed shells lay in jumbled piles where the ocean had washed them up. The roar of crashing waves drowned out the animated chatter of seagulls and the contented babble of people draped lazily over sun chairs. A light, salty breeze blew the hair out of my eyes as I sprinted down the humongous ocean.

Pelicans made acrobatic dives and swoops into the ocean as they searched for their lunch beneath the gushing waves. They greedily gobbled silver fish, which were flailing and panicking as if they were on land. The pelicans gulped, and you could still see the fish struggling and thrashing in the pelicans’ bulging pouches. The ocean glistened and shimmered in the sun’s blistering beams of light, and golden light gushed over the horizon. I heard excited shouts ahead, and I dashed over to where crowds of people were standing. They were gawking at the ocean breathlessly, and at first I thought they were just gaping at the humongous waves, but then I saw it. A gray-blue fin, slicing the water like a pizza. It leapt out of the water like a gymnast, not its whole body, only its back. It curved gracefully, forming an arc before splashing back under the waves. It was a dolphin! I called my siblings over to catch up to the graceful animal slipping through the ocean’s grasping hands.

A Walk Down the Ocean a pelican catches a fish

I sprinted down giant sand dunes, splashing in tide pools and dashing through puddles. I was far ahead of my brother and sisters, and they were also struggling to keep up with the playful creature. My heart raced, and my legs carried me across the beach of their own accord. I kept up with the dolphin, and every time it disappeared, I felt anxious. I leapt over half-ruined sand castles and heaps of rocks and pebbles. Its fin popped out more and more, daring me to follow it and teasing me if I couldn’t keep up. It dived in and out of the waves playfully, and wherever it went people cried out in amazement. I followed it until I was gasping for breath, and I sat down on a heaping, golden sand dune to take a short break.

After a while, I jumped up to start my chase once again. I couldn’t see the dolphin, but joyful shouts up ahead told me it wasn’t too far. I sprinted faster this time, spraying wet sand in every direction as I tried to catch up to my teasing friend. Finally, I caught a glimpse of it once again, leaping through salty waves in a show-off way. I reached it just as it dived under the angry ocean.

When I reached the scratchy rocks and the bright orange caution tape, I gazed longingly at the beautiful creature. A hand pulled me away, and my mom whispered, “We’re headed to the airport now. We’ll stop for dinner on the way, ’K?” I glanced back quickly at the dolphin, still diving with easy elegance, and knew it would be my good luck charm for the long trip back home.

A Walk Down the Ocean Abby Lustig

Abby Lustig, 11
Westmount, Quebec, Canada

A Walk Down the Ocean Audrey Zhang

Audrey Zhang, 9
Levittown, New York

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