Wash up

Something 'washes up' when it comes out of the ocean onto the shore

Today's story: Seaweed
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Wash up

Today’s expression is “wash up.” There are a few different ways to use “wash up,” but we’re going to talk about just one today. If something comes out of the ocean and onto the shore, it washes up.

Don’t ask me why. It has nothing to do with “washing.” Actually, most stuff that washes up on shore is not clean whatsoever!

Did you see the Netflix documentary about the missing Malaysian Airlines plane MH-370 ? The plane went missing one night between Malaysia and China, and it was never found: an international Boeing 777 full of passengers. It’s an incredible story; the documentary was an imperfect telling of the story. But it does tell about how airplane parts washed up on the beaches of Africa. And investigators are not 100 percent certain, but they are nearly certain, that the airplane parts that washed up on the beach were from the missing plane.

The airplane parts came out of the ocean and landed on the beach, so we say they washed up on the beach. There are not many missing airplanes. Very, very few crash in the ocean. So if a part of a Boeing 777 washes up on the beach in Africa, there are only a handful of possibilities. And so, investigators said with a high degree of confidence that those parts were from the missing plane, but they cannot say for certain.

Do you have anything by Yeti? They make coolers, insulated mugs, things like that. I’ve had a few mugs; they’re great. A Yeti cooler can retail for several hundred dollars. But some lucky residents of Alaska got theirs for free. That’s because a large container ship carrying Yeti coolers spilled 109 shipping containers into the ocean in October 2021. Ten months later, coolers began washing up onto the beaches in Alaska.

The coolers were spilled into the ocean. They spent the better part of a year floating around in the sea, until finally landing on the beach in Alaska. One guy flew a seaplane over remote areas of the beach and collected 23 coolers. Others went for walks in their favorite areas and got free bike helmets and coolers—all of it washed up on the beach.

Thousands of miles away from Alaska, hotels and beach towns in Florida, Mexico, and the Caribbean are preparing for a wave of Sargassum seaweed to wash up on the shore between April and August this year.

The seaweed lives in the ocean. It’s alive; it reproduces. But eventually it lands on the beach, where it accumulates and dies and begins to rot, producing a foul smell. I’d rather find a Yeti cooler!

Joking aside, this threatens the tourism industry because few beachgoers want to walk through seaweed that smells like rotten eggs. So, as you learned, tourist areas are dedicating a lot of time and money toward preventing the Sargassum from reaching the beach, but also cleaning it up after it washes up on shore.

Other things that can wash up on shore: Seashells, rocks, pollution, dead animals, fishing nets, trash, driftwood, stuff like that.

JR’s song of the week

Now it’s time for JR’s song of the week. Today it’s by GoldFord and it’s called “Walk With Me.” This is another recent song that sounds like an older genre. Play this song—this sounds like soul music or gospel music.

“Walk With Me” came out during the pandemic. It was recorded in the early stages of the lockdowns in Los Angeles. They even recorded it while social distancing, if you believe that.

Here are some of the lyrics:

“I know the rain of today // Will bring tomorrow’s bloom // When we can’t see where we’re going // What the world is coming to // You walk with me; I’ll walk with you.”

Great song this week, JR, thank you for that. “Walk With Me” by GoldFord.

See you next time!

That’s all for Plain English today, Thursday, April 13, 2023. Remember: I need your help on Instagram. We just refreshed the page, posted a lot of new content, and I’d love to see what you think of it. So connect with us on there, @plainenglishpod . Save content, like it, leave comments, send me messages—I check it every day, right on my phone, so you know I’ll see your comments.

This will just be another place to complement the learning you’re already doing by listening to the audios. Instagram, @plainenglishpod , leave us some love on there. That’s all for today. We’ll be back on Monday with more. See you then.

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Story: Seaweed