Kade bent over and started writing, very determinedly. With precise motions, he traced the letters in the sand. I tried to ask him what he was writing and he shushed me halfway through, saying, "it's not done yet."
Finally, he finished the last letter. He stood proudly behind his statement and asked me to take his picture. I asked what it said, and he replied, "don't hurt me on the beach," bobbing his head up and down and shaking his finger accusingly at me with each syllable.
"oohhh......" I replied. I was a little concerned. What did he think, exactly, would happen to him on the beach? Was he scared of sea-shell gleaning strangers? Wet dogs running wildly with their leashes trailing behind them? A killer whale beaching itself for the sole purpose of swallowing Kade whole?
"Honey, no one's going to hurt you on the beach! Or anywhere! Why would you think that?"
"Nooo, not me! My words. I don't want people to step on them and ruin them. So I wrote, 'don't hurt me on the beach.' Did you get the picture? Ok, lets go."