While walking on a sandy beach I came across Starfish Fantasy Land, a place of exotic palaces, sweeping roads and mound-shaped houses decorated with seaweed, sticks and shells. Its name was written in the wet sand above the approaching tide.

It brought a smile to my face. I passed thinking no more of it.

The prince of Starfish Fantasy Land had perfect skin, perfect eyes and magazine hair. He sang with the Land’s hit boy-band, of course, could dance to any groove and wore a slightly tilted smile. But on this evening he was troubled. Prince Brad gathered his small subjects around him—five hundred sandcastle maidens and five hundred boys like him (if more pimply and puny) and told them the terrible news of the coming flood. Their beautiful land would soon be taken from them. So they gathered their belongings and scattered into the dunes, unseen in the half-light of dusk, as the tide flattened Starfish Fantasy Land and took away its sand and sticks, its shells and its seaweed.

When I returned that way it was gone.

At a nearby pizza parlour three girls talked about the land they’d created and giggled about a group of boys they’d watched playing beach cricket.

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