The Sea Monster I Saw
(A true account)
Age: About 11 years old (I was in 7th grade.)
Date: Possibly February 3, 1933 (It was unseasonably warm, and I remember thinking that normally I’d be wearing a sweater.)
Place: Stewart’s Point, California (About 90 miles above San Francisco on Coast #1 Highway. The land is still privately owned and is rugged.)
Occasion: I was alone sitting on a 150’ cliff writing poetry. I looked up, saw it, didn’t believe it, closed my eyes, pinched myself for several seconds, opened my eyes, and it was still there!
Distance: 15-20 miles offshore (It was in the shipping lane.)
Size: 2 ½ freighters in length (I later learned that would be 600’-1000’.) (It made the whales I had watched spouting earlier look very small.)
Thoughts: “No fire coming out of its mouth… That’s silly—only a fairy tale! Well, the Chinese must have had some reason for their Dragon Day celebration… He looks so proud and friendly. His head is something like a horse’s head. I’m not scared, although I guess he could pick me off this cliff, if he wanted to… He’s too big to be called a serpent—too thick. I can’t see them, but I can imagine feet or paddlers under the humps for propulsion.
Wonder how long he’ll stay… He’s not moving or traveling. Well, as long as you’re there, I may as well analyze you. Skin? How do I describe it? Not scales… not armor plating… light and dark areas of oil paint pulled out with a palette knife! Is that a nostril or an eye halfway between? It’s very large!.. It’s mouth is not open, so can’t see teeth---or fire… He is pleasant-looking, but not “smiling”. There’s a bump on top of the head, but only a slight one. Is it an ear?.. a spout hole? No… He is charcoal gray in color—not black like the whales I saw spouting and playing a while ago out there. No whales in sight now! He has two thick humps and a very thick tail, and I can see water under the humps. He’s in the shipping lane… but the size! Two-and-a-half freighters long?! Wow! I wonder how long he has lived… He could be as old as time…
He’s still there. What else can I look for? No fins… No gills… No flippers or appendages. Guess that’s all I can see… Wish I had a camera. No one will believe me… Wonder how he’ll submerge… There he goes! Just slowly sinking down, as is, like a giant tub toy. I knew he was a monster—not a serpent! A sea serpent would have straightened out as he nosed down. He’s heading north, like the whales. I’ll sit here awhile and see if he comes up again…” (He didn’t, although I waited a long time!)