My soft spot for turtles may or not come from my college years at the University of Maryland. Terrapins sports teams. Diamondback student newspaper. Go Terps Go slogan. Testudo statue with a shiny nose to run for good luck on the quad.
Anyway. I also recall having a small real turtle in a plastic tub on my dresser as a kid way before that.
So when our family reunion core of four set out down the road just a mile or two from the house in South Padre Island for the Sea Turtle reserve, you bet I was ready. We all were.
The setting just off the lagoon was beautiful.
An education session at the amphitheater was just about to start when we entered the facility at mid-morning. We were told about the founder and the mission.
Then we walked into the exhibit set up for the turtles with issues that will not allow them to be released back into nature.
Their behavior varied. Some hid. One circled his tank continuously, getting right in the faces of visitors.
Most of the tanks were covered with murals, thanks to donations. Lovely.
A walk to a covered outdoor area brought us to the turtles going through rehab with hopes for release to the wild. Some empty tanks told of success.
It gave me one wonderful feeling.
My terrific daughter Elisabeth and her sensational significant George Three stopped at the booth in the building and adopted turtle Tilley for George’s mom Sue. Their donation will toward her care and rehabilitation. To say that Sue is thrilled is an understatement.