Not long ago we spent the afternoon playing at the beach. The waves were just right for boogy boarding and as usual we spent most of the day in the water.
We'd been there for a while when the Island King decided to go sit on the beach and rest - which is code for sit on the beach and have a beer.
The boys and I were still out in the water when I saw a man who'd been sitting just down the beach from us walk over and talk to the Island King. They talked for a while and then he wandered back to his spot and the Island King came back out into the water with us.
He grabbed a boogy board and waded out a little to wait for a good wave. The boys and I were standing closer to the beach watching him and as a wave swelled behind him I saw a shark in the swell.
It was incredible! It was about 4 feet long and as the wave swelled I got a great look at him. He was swimming parallel to the beach and I could see his whole body.
Then the wave crested and he was gone. I don't know what kind he was but it was really cool seeing one at such close range.
The Island King was looking at us and never saw it.
Later, we were sitting on the beach and I asked about the man who'd come over to talk to him earlier.
"Oh, he said he saw a shark earlier and since you and the boys were in the water he thought he should tell me about it."
He said the man told him he was here on vacation from Arkansas and that he thought sharks only lived WAY out in the Gulf. The Island King said the guy was pretty freaked out and asked if maybe the one he saw was a fluke and there wouldn't be any more - because he really wanted to go swimming but not if there were sharks.
It's hard to know what to tell people when they ask that question. You don't want to lie and tell them there aren't any sharks but at the same time you don't want to scare them into not going in the water.
The Island King said he told the man that what he really needed to watch out for was lightning, which led them to talking about that instead of sharks.
"So you never answered his question?"
"No way. If I told him how many sharks I saw last week when I was up in the helicopter he'd never go in the water!"
I told him about the shark I'd just seen behind him and he said "So there was a shark behind me and you didn't say a word?"
"Well that man told you there was one while I was in the water and you didn't tell me either."
Which made us laugh.
Not too long after that a storm front started moving in from the Gulf. We sat on the beach and watched the clouds come in and then saw a distant flash of lightning.
Time to go.
We were packed up and in the car in minutes.
Which made us laugh some more because the shark didn't bother us but one flash of lightning and we're out of there LOL
And of course we watched Jaws that night - just for fun.