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There are tides, and currents. The currents brought the velella to the shore and the tide left them high and dry on the beach. Purple jellyfish, papery-thin, have traveled this great distance to me. The wind. The wind had a hand in it too. The jellyfish fly a sail, seeking the wind. High and dry, littering the beach.

Dad says that is the time to look for Japanese floats.

We have several in our house, scooped out of the ocean while Dad was out fishing. Others were found out in the surf.

My specialty is the sea glass that litters our beach. All I find are shards. I wonder how many were once bottles with secret messages inside? Probably not many. But a girl can dream.

The currents and tides have no mind of their own. I once saw a huge tree beached on our shore. A few days later, it was gone.

There are other sea dwellers that have a mind of their own. The tide had come in, brushing high against the sea wall. A seal had come in too, where I had walked in the sand not long before. It floated in the water, like a mermaid wishing for the shore. But we intruded, and with a splash, it sped away into deeper waters.

Velella have no choice. They must go where the wind blows. They must follow the currents. And now they are high and dry, papery-thin on the shore.