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Born Ready This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine.

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There it was. Clashing, crashing, and rumbling towards me every second. I looked up at my grandpa and hoped for the best. I took a deep breath and advanced into the "stormy swimming" pool. It was now that I had to show my true colors of beach bum-ness. An ocean and a 10-year-old boy had come together at last to complete the puzzle. I was officially going to learn how to bodysurf, a special trait to my family for years.

The Beach Bum Club included my Grandpa, my father, and my brother. I was the missing link. My orange and blue-striped bathing suit glistened from the rays of the hot sun. This was my lucky bathing suit: I had skimmed a rock seven skips, I had caught a winning football catch, and I had boogie boarded for the first time all while wearing it.

"Okay, we've went through all the steps on the ground," my grandpa told me, "now let's do it Matty! "

"Are you sure I'm ready?" I asked as my last words before entering what could be my last dip in the ocean.

"You were born ready!" he exclaimed.

My toes entered the incoming tide that I have been so accustomed to all my years. The spray of the ocean on my body felt wonderful, as almost a sign of reassurance. My grandpa dove into a couple of waves, as did 1, until we got to the right point of departure. All that was left was to find the right wave and "ride the big one". 'Turn around, crouch down, and get a good pushoff was running through my mind like runners at the Boston Marathon. And then there it was. Perfect in shape, perfect in size, and perfect for me.

The wink in my grandpa's eye told me that it was now or never. A quick glance at my bathing suit encouraged me to strive to reach my final goal, no matter how grim the outcome looks. A quick turn was followed by a good crouch. The push off was like a true Wiesenfeld. One minute I was with my grandpa deep in the great sea, and the next I tasted sand. This meant one thing: I was tasting sand ... from the shoreline! I had conquered the great wave, and more important my great fear. Standing there in adoration I felt one with the beach, thanks to my grandpa and thanks to my suit. My bathing suit and I have forever become honorary members of the Beach Bum Club.

This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. This piece has been published in Teen Ink’s monthly print magazine.






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