Twice my family decided it would be a good idea to spend a week at the beach on Galveston Island, quite possibly one of the filthiest beaches in the country. Petrochemical pollution and dead seaweed permeate the sand. The silt turns the water brown. However, I did pretend to learn how to use a surfboard. Galveston is probably not meant for inhabitants. This barrier island protects the waterway into Houston. I canít question, though, that I had fun constantly using my boogie board to ride the waves to shore. The island didnít provide much else for a wayward teenager.