Sons are a heritage from the Lord, children a reward from him. Psalm 127:3 (NIV)
Wednesday night’s storm repeated itself on Thursday at even greater velocity. We had a couple of hours of sun in the morning. Before the ferry arrived at 10, husband and I completed a walk around the entire island begun the day before. Oldest son said that the island is the Gulf of Mexico’s garbage filter as much of the stuff washed into the bay finds its way onto the island. We found large sheets of plywood, a boat hatch, tons of plastic bags, Styrofoam plates and cups, deck timbers, and almost a full bag of apples spread along the beach. We quickly realized we could not carry all we found so did what we could focusing on fishing line, hooks and bobbers that would endanger wildlife. Husband carried back enough to fill a tackle box and then, carefully untangled it all and sorted it out for reuse. He finished just about the time the ferry arrived and I coaxed him into a swim before the beach got too crazy. We were back at oldest son’s cabin before the sun got too high and it is a good thing because despite my an overcast sky, new bathing suit that covers my entire body, 50 waterproof sunscreen on my face and a large hat, I still got sunburned. My brand new skin turned pink and hot and caused me to fret over how it could have happened. At first I thought it was a reaction to the sunscreen, but soon, I realized it was caused by the sun. The only thing I can figure out is that despite the sunscreen, the sun reflected off the water. The side of my face that was against the water side is redder than the other side. I enjoy being outdoors and so now I am worried that this may mean I will have to start staying in the house during daylight hours like an albino. By 11:00, no one was getting any sun as a fierce storm hit the island. All the beachgoers congregated under the pavilions to wait for the return ferry. Oldest son raced around the island on his mule (not a real mule which you would think a park ranger would ride, but a motor powered one) to make sure that everyone knew that the park was being closed down and rest of the ferry runs had been cancelled so everyone had to leave at Noon. Still, as the boat was getting ready to leave the dock, one loan volunteer sauntered down the dock totally unconcerned by the urgency of the situation. When the boat finally disappeared from view, there was nothing for us to do but wait and see if we would be able to leave as well. Husband and I took naps while oldest son monitored the radar. At 4:00, he alerted us that if we were going to get off the island that day, we need to make a run for it. Despite my misgivings, he knew what he was talking about and we had a calm, though wet ride back to the mainland. I guess every parent has a moment when they know that their child has grown up. To see him making decisions that could impact people’s lives, masterfully handling the boat and taking care of us was impressive.