Monday, August 03, 2009

Ocean Motion

Or lack there of! We spent a few days with my parents this past weekend. Sort-of our last break for freedom before being locked into the academic calendar for the next 14 years. I'll cover our Brunswick outings here, then our little Savannah trip in a separate post.

We actually made two separate trips to Jekyll Island while we were there. Our first trip was to the beach. Temps were running in the 100s (38C) during the afternoon, and barely getting into the low 80s (28C) overnight, so we wanted to hit the beach first thing in the morning. We checked the tide tables, and we knew it was going to be approaching low tide, but I guess I had forgotten just what the beach is like at low tide.

Yes, folks, that is a photo of the ocean. Not a lake, the Atlantic! It was as close to flat calm as I have ever seen it. And then there were these, which was actually pretty cool.

All of these little tiny shells, less than a centimeter across at the widest point, clearly showed where the surf had come in and left them behind. There were three different bands of these as you approached the water. I don't ever recall seeing anything like it before. It looked pretty neat, but boy, did those little shells hurt our feet!

There was also no breeze at all. That is just unheard of, especially right down by the water. This was also the first time we've been to the beach that it wasn't at least partially overcast. Nothing but sun as far as the eye could see. It was already over 90 degrees, no breeze, everything you stepped on was either slimy mud or crunchy shells. No one was having much fun. Well, Luke was having a little fun, despite the muck.

And DH had a little fun, too.

But after about 30 minutes, even Luke was ready to go. Not such a fun day at the beach this time. Lesson learned: if it is within 2 hours of low tide, don't bother.

We did better the next day at the Georgia Sea Turtle Center. It has been open for a few years, and everyone I know has highly recommended it. Jekyll Island was kind enough to mark the way. Follow the Turtle Brick Road:

This huge replica greets you as you enter. It is enormous! Probably 15 feet across. I don't recall the name off the top of my head; we all took turns chasing the child through the exhibits.

He didn't want to stand still very long, not even to measure his size against the turtles.

He did like these little kiosks, though. He thought turning the handle and watching the display change was very fun.

Each person gets a "bookmark" to remember their trip, and each of the stations has an embossing station for you to make your mark. I think Papa helped with most of them.

Luke's favorite part of the inside exhibit was this crab. He was so active! He kept wandering around the perimeter of the aquarium, likely looking for an exit. He also found Luke pretty fascinating.

The stars of the show, of course, are at the hospital. It was really fascinating to see them in the rehab tubs. And even seeing the models at the center, it was still a bit of a surprise to see how truly huge these turtles were. My pictures didn't turn out great, and I didn't have a chance to download my father's photos, but it was still really amazing (and very hot inside). These mirrors hang above the tanks to help you see down into them.

We left later in the evening to provide Luke with a special treat. As previously mentioned, Luke has some sort of obsession with hotels. We had an outing planned for Saturday morning with my grandfather in Savannah, so we went up Friday night and stayed near the museum. The hotel may well have been Luke's favorite part of the trip!

Hmm, where ever might Luke be? A new added bonus of hotel stay is the pool. We tried to take Luke Friday evening, but there were *way* too many people in the very tiny pool that evening. But the next morning, it looked like this:

Much better! Luke and DH had the place to themselves for the better part of 30 minutes. The water was pretty cold. They both had their teeth clenched most of the time.

There was still plenty of fun to be had. What's not fun about an empty pool? Luke could even stand up in most of the water. It was only 5 feet (1.5 m) at its deepest point.

Nana and Papa were kind enough to lallygag a bit in bringing my grandfather to Savannah to give Luke some time to play. We were just preparing to check out and start our next adventure when they arrived at the hotel. I'll recount our further adventures next time.

Currently feeling: hot and toasty

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