Who hasn’t picked up an object off the sand that struck their fancy: A pretty piece of glass, a beautiful shell, a stray syringe, a chunk of whale vomit?
It’s no chest of gold coins, but for one lucky British eight-year-old, it might as well be. What he and his family thought was a odd rock is actually rare whale vomit, a prized ingredient of perfumes.
Decades of floating and exposure to sun and salt have turned the substance, technically called ambergris, into a smooth lump of compact rock which feels waxy and has a sweet smell.
Valued at approximately $10,000 per pound, his parents are doubtless thankful they made room for the six pounds of puke in the car.
Never wearing perfume again.Author on Google+