Saturday evening finds us on Miramar beach, where I spent a lot of time bunking classes during my college years 😉
As Mom & Dad take off on their evening stroll, and Hubby and Ishaan play Cricket (what else!), I meander along the water’s edge, camera on the ready, to see what I can see. It is low tide and I am sorry to say there’s plenty of exposed rubbish along the shore 😦 All manner of plastic – bags, wrappers, bottles, broken glass bottles, & lots of litter :(. Thankfully, the low tide has also exposed millions of crab holes and their iridescent silver-blue inhabitants 🙂 They go scurrying across in their hundreds, leaving a patchwork of feathery footprints across the moist sand. For all their running around, they seem full of purpose, which has me wondering, ‘What is the purpose of a crab’s life?’ Other than the obvious one of providing tasty meals for us greedy humans, I mean? But I ditch all attempts at philosophy, when I stumble upon a very neat crab-style tableau right under my feet!
A little crab scurries purposefully towards what appears to be an empty hole to my unobservant human eye. I shall refer to him (If it’s a her, I’m truly sorry, but determining crab-gender is not one of my skills. Also the behavior, kind of made me veer towards the masculine!), as Crab 1 or C1. I watch intrigued, for no particular reason other than I’m close enough to get a good shot.
Turns out the ‘empty’ hole actually belongs to Crab 2 (C2), who, I can only presume has been curled up inside, minding his own business! C1 is having none of that! He wants that comfy, dank hole (crabs like the dank don’t you know!) and he wants it now!
He launches a brazen attack on the slightly larger C2, who has no clue what just hit him! However, he’s very sharp (Crabs are! Who knew?), and recovers instantly to launch an equally impressive counter-attack (could he be a she then? :P).
C1 has the advantage (perhaps coz he’s smaller & nimbler), and after a few minutes of wrestling, scurries into his newly claimed home! I watch fascinated as these two tiny beings battle it out on the sand below my feet and use their luminescent pincers and their spindly legs to duel each other for Nature’s necessity…a place to call home.
I’m pretty impressed and manage to remember somewhere between thrust and parry, that the D 90 can also film video! I’m recording this epic battle and feel like a NatGeo reporter on assignment (Oh be quiet! A girl can dream can’t she!). I’ve included it here, but parts are out of focus…I’m still very much a beginner so forgive the poor quality.
C2 retreats for a minute and returns to launch a second offensive. Suddenly in the midst of the tangle of legs, there emerges a third crab, (C3 in a guest appearance that lasts for a few seconds!), who has obviously been disturbed by the brawl overhead. He pops out agitated and retreats in a flash, caught in a tangle of snapping pincers. That’s the last I see of him, wise soul! Finally, C1 seems to give up and scurries to the left where he dives immediately into an empty hole and seems content. C2 takes possession of his home and calm is restored.
I hang around for a few minutes to see if anything interesting might start again, but cries of ‘Mama’ distract me. Time to leave my brief foray into the exotic Natural World and return to my rather mundane, routine existence. And yet, not so different are they…food & shelter…in both worlds – necessities to be fought for and guarded with passion. I know we humans think of ourselves as evolved creatures, but sometimes I wonder. We are the only species that wants more than we need, breed more than we should and ruin our own home, the only Planet we have, with a nonchalance that is criminal & disturbing. We have a lot to learn.
p.s. I would love to hear any close encounters of the ‘wild’ kind that you might have had!
Have a happy week People 🙂