The guardian of the beach

il guardiano della spiaggia

Erminio lives in a faraway beach, not a very far away beach I would say, it’s only half an hour drive from here… it’s just there, where the river waters merge with the sea waters.
Erminio is one of the most beautiful and majestic swan I have ever seen.
He walks on the beach, accepts the bread and cookies the tourists give him, and the sticklebacks which sometimes the old fisherman gives him.
One day the sea got rough and the high tide left a faded red bucket on the shore. Then, the water subsided forgetting the bucket and leaving it behind.
Erminio knows the sea very well, he knows that what the sea takes, will later be given back, and what the sea gives, will later be taken back.
Therefore, Erminio decided to guard the bucket. Sooner or later the sea would come to take it back.
If some children were getting close, Erminio opened his beak with a threatening look, scaring the poor kids away.
Not even the lifeguard, who wanted to clean the beach, could get close to the bucket. Erminio would give him an even worse treatment: he puffed out his chest, spread his wings with a threatening stance and his most wicked gaze.
No one came to touch the bucket. Its guardian waited and waited for the sea to come and take it back.
Finally, one day the blue waters became white, foaming and thunderous. One wave came, and the bucket was floating on the sea again. Erminio watched it, happily sailing towards other beaches. He followed it with his gaze till the bucket became a tiny, faded red spot. It was only at that time that he realised the sea had thanked him for his job, leaving some small sea breams on the shore.


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