Sammy the Seal Wants to Play
Sammy spent most of his days looking out at the kids playing on the beach and splashing in the shallow waves. It looked like they were having so much fun, he wished he could play with them. Although he had friends, he felt like he was missing out on something.
One day, when Sammy and his mother were lying on rocks, enjoying the warm sunshine, he asked, “Mama, why can’t I play with the other kids?” Sammy was young and didn’t realize he was different from them.
“What do you mean, dear, you have lots of friends. There are Suzie and Tommy, Zoe and Opal; and what about Belle? You two are best buddies.”
“No, mama, I’m talking about the kids, over there, on the sand. I see them tossing red and blue striped beach balls to each other and building sandcastles with bright yellow buckets. They even get to have picnics under big rainbow-colored umbrellas. Oh mama, they look like they’re having so much fun!”
Sammy’s mother wasn’t sure how to answer; she’d often seen him gazing out onto the land, a wistful look on his face. “Well, dear, our species live in the water, and people live on the land.”
“But why, mama? They can do both; play on the sand and swim in the ocean!!” Sammy was such a curious little guy and asked many questions.
“Well, we can be out of the water for a short time, like we are now, sunbathing on these rocks. But we don’t have legs and feet like humans do, to walk around. We also need the water to keep our skin moist, so it doesn’t dry out. Everything we need to survive is in the sea; the food we eat, like squid, flounder, and octopus,” she answered.
“And shrimp, mama, that’s my most favorite!” Sammy said excitedly.
“Yes, dear, and shrimp,” replied Sammy’s mother.
Sammy was quiet for a moment, then said, “But can I go play with them for just a little while, please, mama?”
Oh dear, she thought, the questions he asks! She wasn’t quite sure what to say; he had such a hopeful look on his face. “I’ll tell you what, why don’t you swim as close as you can to the beach and watch them play for a while,” she responded.
This made Sammy happy, but kind of nervous too. Still, curiosity got the best of him, and he decided to give it a try. He swam to a small formation of rocks near the shore and hid behind them, too shy to get closer. Then slowly, he swam around to the front, bobbing along in the waves until a little girl in a yellow polka-dotted swimsuit noticed him. He knew her name was Sandy; he’d heard her mother call out to her before.
“Hey, look!” she yelled excitedly to her friends, “There’s a little seal out there by the rocks, and he’s looking at us!”
All of the kids ran into the water, wanting to get a better look, it startled Sammy for a moment, but then he decided to swim closer.
Sandy yelled, “Oh, little seal, do you want to play with us?”
Sammy looked behind him, thinking, is she talking to me? Suddenly a big beach ball came sailing toward him; it bounced off his nose and went flying back to the kids.
They squealed in delight, “Hey, he’s playing with us!!” They spent the rest of the afternoon taking turns tossing beach balls back and forth with Sammy. He was having the best time of his life!
When it was time for the kids to leave, he felt a little sad.
Then Sandy called out, “We’ll come back and play with you again, little seal!” And this made him very happy.
So, for the rest of the summer, Sammy played with his new friends, he even brought along Suzie and Tommy, and Zoe and Opal. And of course, his best friend, Belle.