We played at the water’s edge, our sandcastle knights and kings battling the rising tide to save the walls of an undecorated fortress. The black clouds gathered at the horizon, sending its minions like gray ribbons to envelope the sun and threaten our fun.
But we stayed, prolonging our beach time, hoping the clouds would blow south or north of us. And occasionally, the sun tricked us into complacency by shining down from a small blue patch in the otherwise foreboding sky. When the sun peeked out, the sea turned a dark green color. It looked like glass that had been chiseled by a strong hand.
“Mom, we should go,” said the cautious son.
“We’re already wet. As long as it doesn’t thunder or lightning, we can stay.” But mothers are not always right.
Mere moments later, the clouds joined the rising tide in its battle against our castle and battalion of three boys and their parents. Rain pelted us as we screeched and ran and laughed, pushing each other across the sand, up the bank, down the path to the already soaked golf cart waiting for us.
“The street is a river already!”
“Dad, drive faster!”
The roosters were silent. The streets were empty, the locals and other tourists more willing to accept a timely and honorable defeat. Finally at the Back Banyans, we piled out of the golf cart and ran into the cabin just as the lights went out all over the island, and the neighbors’ alternate generators kicked on, loudly humming with the rain.
Out at the horizon, the sky had already cleared.
But our sandcastle had surely fallen.