Admittedly, it's nice having another person in the house, keeping me company. Keeping me accountable. We set her up in the living room, and she seems to be fairly comfortable on the futon. Even though Marie has her own little tics, like her refusal to use the computer as anything other than a glorified music player, her company is nice. Earlier, when she asked me why I was willing to do the research I have been for her, I wasn't exactly sure where to start.
I guess a lot of my curiosity about things that most people don't see or think are real stems from some stories my mom told me when I was little. Apparently, I was a little too enamored of the ocean as a kid, and every time we went down to the beach (living only an hour or so from the gulf is nice), they had to worry about me trying to swim too deep. I have to wonder why she went about it this way, but my mother told me stories about a creature called the Undertoad, a terrible over-sized amphibian that lived in the Gulf whose favorite prey was children. Any child who wasn't careful while swimming was in danger of being grabbed by the feet and dragged out to sea where they would be drowned and then eaten. Oddly enough, though, I believed her. Not due to being a gullible child, but because I'd seen or thought I'd seen something under the water out by the sand bars once. Something large and lumpy, with skin that looked black and green, with huge reflective eyes, even in the waters of the gulf. Maybe it was the result of an over-active imagination, but I never went out that far again until I was older.
Looking back, I feel sure that at least logically, it was just a story to scare a child away from danger, but the figure I saw under the water made me curious, even as it had terrified me. Maybe that's strange, but I was never exactly what a lot of people would consider completely normal. The main reason I'm putting this here is because I didn't really answer Marie earlier, and I know she'll read this. Another part of it is that I just want to record that bit of a story mom told me while I'm thinking about it. It's been lonely.
As to the other events, there's been no news on the search for the kids, and I'm considering joining the search, even though I likely wouldn't be much help. I think I saw Hoodie McLurkerpants when I was in town today, but he was gone when I actually looked. I'm not sure whether that's fortunate or not, but I'll go with fortunate.