Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Why Yes, You SHOULD be Jealous

Now, I'm not what you'd call a nature person. In fact, when a family friend/psychologist gave me one of those 'Interest/Personality Tests" that tell you what you want to do when you grow up but don't consciously know yet, I'm pretty sure I scored in the negative for jobs like "Park Ranger," "Farmer," "Conservationist," or "Smelly Hippie Who Is At One With Nature." I have no qualms about the fact that I am sitting on the porch of my hotel room here in Hawaii blogging away and watching the sunset with a cup of tea in my hands and not down by the beach.

But by the power of Greyskull, whale watching is pretty much the shit*.

*Maybe it's because it mostly requires sitting and waiting. I'm pretty good at both of those things.

My mother is a whale watching fanatic (while driving along the coast at the beginning of our trip, my mother's exclamations of "WHAAAAAALE!!!" may or may not have caught the attention of passing motorists), but who doesn't enjoy the sight of an adorable, 50-foot humpback whale*?


So my family has made a semi-tradition (yes, we've been here enough times to have semi-traditions) of going on whale-watching tours, which mostly involve getting on a giant boat that still finds a way to rock to either side at roughly a 45 degree angle and rolling eyes at the people who would jump up and down at the site of a whale poking out of the ocean a mile and a half out*. Every once and awhile we'll have a good moment (a couple years ago we saw a whale do a tail slap), and the tours are usually worth it, but nothing overly dramatic.

But today's was rather different.

It started off well (the captain dropping a Star Wars reference was automatic bonus points), and we saw some pretty solid activity, but about halfway through a baby whale and two adults swam RIGHT NEXT TO THE BOAT* and circled it a few times, leading to some incredible pictures:

*Boats aren't allowed to run engines or approach whales inside a 100-yard range, but whales can certainly come close once the engines have been killed. People in The Whale Biz call it being "mugged," so I made sure to tell Girlfriend that I had been mugged in a text immediately after.

A baybeh, and if you look closely underneath you can see the Mama whale its riding.

And finally:

Shazaam. Kudos to the brosef for that pic, got the teensie one chin-slapping and exhibiting general BAMFery for something only a couple days old.

Bonus points: saw a Yellow Submarine-ish thing.

Just another day in paradise I guess.


Eleni said...

Baby whale!!! Man, I need to go on a whale watch. You were lucky they came so close. Cool.

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