Tuesday, June 10, 2014

Searching for Buried Treasures

  • I've walked many beaches, and as most of us do, bring home a pocketful of assorted treasures with each outing.  Shells that have been discarded by their inhabitants, unusual rocks, interesting looking pieces of driftwood, and if we're lucky, some colorful pieces of sea glass.

    I've always thought of sea glass as nothing more than litter, mainly bottles that have been tossed by some irresponsible or drunken individuals. My assumption was that the glass was truly only garbage that had been made pretty by the sea. Tossed around in the ocean, the waves and currents breaking it into smaller pieces, giving it smooth edges and polishing it to an iredescent hue. 

    At dinner the other night with friends, I noticed our host had quite a collection of sea glass. Blue, green, white, and come to find out, the rarest color, orange ~ and more interesting, a book on the history of sea glass.  

    According to the book, in addition to all of the garbage that has been tossed overboard, the ocean floor is a rich cargo of ceramic and glass which is the result of shipwrecks, piracy and foul weather. The book detailed how to determine if the glass you find is nothing more than a Bud Light bottle or a piece of fine china from the Titanic or some other historical find. This bit of news sure makes searching for sea glass much more exciting, just like an old-fashioned treasure hunt.

    Now, with each piece I spot in the sand, I pick it up, run my finger around it's edges to check for smoothness, making sure it's had plenty of time at sea, and then slip it in my pocket. Taking it home, I'm not sure where it's come from, but I like the feeling that I'm bringing home a little bit of someone's history.

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