Phosphorescence

It was after nine O’clock and on any other night the children would have been in bed and asleep.

Only this was not any other night.

Last Friday night I kept the kids up specially so that we could wait for full darkness to go down to the rocky beach at Coney Glenn.  It was Black moon (two new moons in one month – as rare as a blue moon) and it was the Chinese New Year.

But that is not why we were heading to the beach in the darkness.

No one having thought to bring a torch we stumbled down the rickety wooden stairs through the bushes to the tiny clutch of sand between the rocks by the illumination of a lighter in the wind. I had my little boy on my hip and my daughter stumbling along just ahead of me, screeching and laughing in turns.

But oh was it worth it!

Because on this rare occasion, for the first time ever in living memory in our area, the crest of every wave that lay before us was shining bright blue from within!

Phosphorus.

All my life I have seen images of glowing sees in movies and on nature programs and rather believed that I may go my whole life without ever getting to see it with my own eyes. And now here I was, on a tiny, rocky beach in the pitch black darkness with glowing blue breakers crashing at my feet! Well we had fun, naturally. We discovered that when you walk (or run or stomp or jump) on the dark wet sand it looks as though stars are shooting out across the sand under your feet.

Then of course the next obvious tactic is to pick up a hand full and throw it into the black shadows.

Stars shooting out across the sand. I might be an adult and mother of two, but come on! I had to play Harry Potter just a little bit. It was the natural next step in our glowing evolution. The air was so magical and charged that my friend and I even did a little impromptu chant and incantation, it was just too a magical a night not to at least try and weave a few magical spells.

 

When we had done with our awed gazing, our games and our bewilderment we drove up to the highest view point and from there we sat and watched a scene I will never forget. Because it seemed as if we sat on the edge of forever. With a black sky full of stars above us and a black sea full of dancing stars below us, and only a narrow strip of even blacker mist on the horizon to separate the two, it really felt as if we had taken a turn out of reality for a bit and were somehow perched on the edge of infinity.

It more than made my day, it made me feel as if anything is possible. It reminded me that magic does exist and most importantly that life is beautiful.

 http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Phosphorescence

 

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