Friday, October 29, 2010

Coastal Walk 海湾小路

We were greeted by a pod of leaping dolphins just beyond the surf zone as we approached the beach.  Their shiny black forms danced in and out the curves of the water, an occasional flap, shot sprays of water upwards and about.  A fin here and a tail there, all glistened in the late afternoon sun, waving cheerfully at their concentrated and excited audience standing about the shore.  One young pup took on an incoming wave, rod it high and low for a while before being called back by mom and dad.  

I suddenly realized it was now approaching winter, and these could be migrating whales.  I was too far to judge their overall size, but the occasional visible fins and tails seemed much closer, clearer and impressively large.  Sprays of water continued to shot up,  yet it was difficult to tell whether they were from a blow hole or flapping dorsal fins.   The tell tale sign could be their colors, which were so inky black and shiny it  screams Orca.  Their leaps were also perfectly shallow and arched with just the tops of their backs rounding above the water,  in slow and rhythmic repetition, in the pattern of the ripples and waves of the ocean, a soothing dance as opposed to the more haphazard jumps of a dolphin.  But they were far away and had their bellies and underside mostly deep into the water so we could not make out the signature white mark of an orca. 

We talked throughout our walks, delighted and intrigued by the puzzle.  No matter the names of these creatures, their joie de vive spilled over the width of the ocean and onto us,  charging us through a power hike, and the rest of the evening with bubbly and chattering conversations.

3 comments:

  1. Wow! They look like orcas to me.

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  2. I just found out that killer whales is a member of the dolphin family. Go figure!

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  3. I didn't realize you got pictures of these guys too! I'm impressed (and envious!).

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