The Cold Ocean
No, not the warm, turquoise bay of desde Desdemona with its dark coral flecks and the huge rays swimming like butterflies. I'm talking about the ocean of Maine. You know the one. At low tide it's encamped about 300 yards from the beach front, exposing a gigantic, flat, stretch of brownish sand. And it's freezing cold, so cold that feet and hands turn blue and sting. So cold gulls face the wind and stand on one foot, and crabs grow thick, hard carapaces and run sideways. At high tide, it roars and pounds and, yes, refrigerates. This ocean doesn't speak Spanish. It speaks Swedish and Finnish. And even swarthy people who live in bright, hot sun (read: me) get wind burned and sunburned. Why? How can that be? Because it's a trick. The wind is cold, the ocean is cold, the air is cold. But, alas, the sun is hot. Very hot. Even at the start of Fall. There may be pumpkins and Concord grapes on the farm stands, but do not be fooled. The Maine sun has its own plan for your skin, and it is to cajole you into leaving the sunscreens at home and then to fry your face. Believe me, after Saturday, I know what I'm talking about. And to think that this never happens to me in desde Desdemona. Ok. Ok. Virtually never. Remember this: sunscreen prevents sun scream.