Oh, there was that family that visited from California. All that way. They brought their Breyer toy horses to the beach, those girls and their cousin. She tried to join in with her own horses but they were inferior, brandless. Later they teased her because she had grown breasts over the year since they’d seen her last, her bathing suit now too small, riding up. She waded into the water and kept her head under for ages. It didn’t matter now. There was no adult supervision. Those days were gone. Her mother was out of there. Her mother existed somewhere else. That was all that was known. Her mother was not there. That was all that was known. Her father never would be there again. Her father would have insisted on adult supervision. Left alone, the girls might die. As a young child, she had been scared, not of the water, but of the teenager helping her out to the deep water and the raft. No, no, no. Mama, mama. Her mother was somewhere, off on shore. Away and unreachable. Mama, mama. She thought of her mother on shore, a cigarette, a book. Maybe a cup of coffee. Her father standing there with a beer in his hand, watching. Supervising. But she did not call him. Mama, mama.

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