Pinterest A Grateful Life Lived: My Not-So-Special Jellyfish Encounter

Tuesday, July 30, 2013

My Not-So-Special Jellyfish Encounter

     When we first arrived on Hilton Head island a few days ago, I was struck by one strange observation on the beach: no one was in the water!  Other than a few people wading near the edge, nearly everyone was hanging out on their beach towels at a safe distance from the waves.  Well, I found out very quickly why that was the case.  Jelly Fish.
     I decided to wade out and enjoy the warm ocean water.  Once I was up to my waist though, I felt what I thought was a bite and immediately reached down to brush off whatever had bit me.  However, I didn't feel anything.  By the time I'd gotten out of the water, the extreme stinging reminded me that a young boy had just come to a lifeguard after getting stung by a jellyfish.  "I think something bit me, or stung me," I announced as I limped back to our towel.  The sting was getting more extreme, and yet, it wasn't as bad as I thought it would be.
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     If the beginning of my story is boring you, hold on: this is where it gets funny.  I limped over to the lifeguard stand, quite worried.  I'd never gotten stung by a jellyfish, but I wasn't sure what would happen.  I've seen some of those lifeguard shows on TV, and I was worried that I would be laid up the rest of the day.  "Excuse me," I urgently said, "I think something bit me...or even: stung me!"
     Without even looking to see my throbbing leg that I thrusted up in the air for him, the tanned lifeguard nonchalantly held out a giant spray bottle that read: "Jelly Fish."  I stood there for a minute until it dawned on me that he wasn't going to get down and spray it for me.  He wanted me to do it.  I gingerly grabbed the crudely labeled bottle and doused myself in the liquid.  Then, I awkwardly stood there again, not sure what to do.  Still not dropping his gaze, he lazily reached out a hand, expecting me to return the bottle I guess.  So I did.  And then I stood there, wondering if that was all he was going to do.  Ashamed that I had thought my jellyfish encounter was so special, I slunk away back to my towel. Apparently, that kind of thing happens all the time...
     Still, I was chuckling at myself the rest of the day.  Every time I thought of my awkward moments with that lifeguard, I thanked God that I probably won't see him ever again.  Here I was thinking they were going to lay me down and suck the venom out of me or something!  But if my stupid tale is worrying you, I promise: it didn't even hurt that bad.  I had assumed it was because of what I've seen on TV where people come out of the water with bites or stings.  Don't avoid the ocean because of a jellyfish.  I was just being an overly-dramatic tourist.  You're more likely to see one of those, than get seriously hurt, the next time you're at the beach.  

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