"Traveling at sea for the first time is a chance to realize that the ocean is not one ocean. The water changes. The Atlantic that seethes off the eastern U.S. is glaucous and lightless and looks mean. Around Jamaica, though, it’s more like a milky aquamarine, and translucent. Off the Cayman Islands it’s an electric blue, and off Cozumel it’s almost purple. Same sort of deal with the beaches. You can tell right away that south Florida’s sand is descended from rocks: it hurts your bare feet and has that sort of minerally glitter to it. But Ocho Rio’s beach is more like dirty sugar, and Cozumel’s is like clean sugar, and at places along the coast of Grand Cayman the sand’s texture is more like flour, silicate, it’s white as dreamy and vaporous as clouds’ white."

A Supposedly Fun Thing I’ll Never Do Again: Essays and Arguments