Day 387: Stinging in the Ocean in Thailand

Today we were out in the ocean for the first time with the little guy.  It was so much fun – after a while he was really enjoying the water and the rhythm of the ocean.  We didn’t go too far out with him, but when my wife had him I swam further out, and BOOM, that’s when I got bit.  Or did I?

Zing!  I turned around quickly after I felt a light but noticeable sting on my side.  Zap!  I thrust my leg upward just a moment later.  Is this tiny jellyfish, I wonder?  Like little baby ones?  Bits of razor sharp sand ripping into my skin?  Or maybe it’s some kind of super salty water that stings your skin a little?  That’s what I hypothesized to my wife when she also felt the light tingles later on.

So, what is it?  I took to this resource I often go to for answers: the Internet.  Maybe you’ve heard of it?  Anyway, I’m not the only one out there who has wondered about this or written about it.  There’s all sorts of reasons listed, ranging from “a type of coral” (none on our beach), to “sea lice” (sounds creepy).  But I’ll go with this explanation from knowphuket.com:

Occasionally, you may notice a light stinging sensation in the water. It is a quick sting that fades so quickly you are not even sure it happened. There are two causes. There may be stingers floating in the water that have fallen from jellyfish further out at sea and washed into shore. The other cause is sea mites; tiny sea creatures that bite if they come into contact with your skin. In both cases, the sting is harmless to most people but a few may get an allergic reaction.

So, I was right with the connection to the jellyfish and wrong about the salty water and razor sand.  I am just glad I am not crazy and now I know what it was.  And the little guy?  He didn’t seem to notice or be bothered by it, so all is fine for more time on the water again. 🙂

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