I pushed my lawn chair into the sand and sat.
I was part of a small crowd, which had gathered on the beach to witness the aftermath of a seldom-seen spectacle of nature.
The crowd included several small girls, who giggled as they flipped through pamphlets and stared with wide-eyed wonder at a little indention on the shore of the Gulf of Mexico.
The spot was the only visible sign of sea turtle nest No. 20, which had hatched a few days earlier.
While the crowd watched, trained volunteers dug into the sand below the spot until they reached the chamber of the nest.
They lifted unhatched eggs, broken eggshells and one dead hatchling from the chamber to be recorded before they buried them again.
All of this amazed the group of small girls, and I heard one of them say they’d seen history.
I smiled and thought about how amazed they’d be if they were ever around when one of those nests hatched.
I saw a sea turtle nest hatch once.
It was something I never knew I needed to see, and something I’ll never forget. (more…)