Guest Post by The City Druid: The Story of the Wandering Lobster

As the title indicates, I’m not the Vulcan Jedi Time Lord.  I am the City Druid, and he has asked me to sit in for him, since he has been writing so much the last few weeks that his brains are starting to leak out his ears.  So I’m here to tell you a story of an adventure that he and I, and another person, had many years ago.It was December of 1988, and he and I were staying with his girlfriend at the time.  I worked as a legal secretary for my father, he kept house, and she was a college student.  Since he cooked for everyone, he and I had gone grocery shopping at Kroger.

It was a Wednesday, and payday was on Friday, so we were there to get a few necessities for dinner.  While we were shopping, we stopped to watch the lobsters in the tank.
Mostly, they were ordinary lobsters, either sitting in the corners or sparring with their rubber-banded claws over territory.  However, there was one that absolutely got our attention.
It was blue.  Have you ever seen a blue lobster?
We vowed to come back on Friday after I got paid so that we could buy that lobster.
Well, Friday rolled around, and I got paid, and we went to Kroger to look at the lobsters.  Much to our disappointment, Blue was gone, off to boil in a pot for someone’s dinner.  However, we found another lobster in the tank that was nearly as remarkable: it was mottled green and blue/brown in a pattern very much like hunter’s camouflage, and it had a barnacle growing where its nose would have been had it had one.
We bought it.  We also bought a bag of ice and put the ice, and the live lobster, into my red Igloo cooler, and put the cooler into the back of my little Ford Festiva.  Then we went to the apartment where we lived in Inman Park, I parked the car in front of the building and kept the engine running while he ran in and got his girlfriend.  When they came out of the front door of the building, she was reading a book, and he led her to the car and helped her into the back seat.  She didn’t say a word, just kept reading.
He got into the passenger seat, and I started out.  We went downtown by way of Edgewood Avenue, and headed south on the Downtown Connector.  We talked, she read, and we generally had a very pleasant drive.  At some point, around about Macon, we switched drivers (his girlfriend didn’t have a license, so she just kept reading), and we continued on our way down I-16.  Shortly after that, she realized we weren’t in Atlanta anymore, and asked where we were going.
Our goal, since I haven’t mentioned it yet, was to take the lobster to the ocean at its closest point to our home (in this case, Tybee Island, Georgia, home of Savannah Beach) and release it into the water.  We felt it should have a chance to influence the gene pool.  We told her that as we drove.  She was interested in the adventure, and at that point it was getting dark so she joined the conversation.
It’s been a lot of years, so I don’t remember what we discussed.  I do remember stopping at a rest stop to get out of the car and stretch.  It was just an area for tractor-trailers to park, and it had no street lights, so we got out and lay in the grass to look up at the sky.  Since we were in the middle of nowhere, there was a vast expanse of bejeweled sky, and the arm of the Milky Way was clearly visible.  We lay in the grass and talked for a few minutes, about the stars and constellations, and got back on the road.
Once we reached Savannah, we ate and drove on out to Tybee Island.  Our biggest challenge, since it was December 2nd, was finding a hotel that was open for business.  We ended up at an Econolodge on the beach.  Since it was out of season, it was affordable.  We all went to bed.
At dawn, we got up and hauled the cooler to the water’s edge.  As planned, the giant bug was hibernating due to the ice, so we were able to safely take it out of the cooler and put it in the shallow part of the surf.  Then we waded a little  in the water that was the temperature of iced tea, and stood on the beach to make sure the lobster went to sea.  It took a while, since we apparently got out there at low tide, or at least as the tide was coming in, because the waves kept pushing the poor, sleepy creature further up on to the sand.
Eventually, it woke up and actively worked to swim out to sea, and we left the beach.  Of the three of us, I was the only one who had been to Savannah, so I was the “native guide”; he gave his girlfriend a driving lesson on the driveways of Fort Pulaski (one of my favorite places to go) after we toured the fort.  Then we made our way to River Street and had breakfast at Huey’s, then took a river boat tour of the port.  Then we headed home,
It was a memorable trip, and one that has been published before.  If you’ve ever read a story called “The Great Lobster Liberation”, that was written by the girlfriend.
And now you know….the rest of the story.
Copyright © 2013 Cynthia Middleton
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