Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Whales Again

My mom asked in a comment whether we had actually seen any whales. We did, in fact, see a number of tails and tips of edges that looked like sea serpents.

A bit underwhelming really. The whales we were following would generally "come up" for about a minute and then descend for 8-10. So you spend a lot of time frantically looking around for something, anything to reassure you that you did not just pay $60 to vomit for three hours. Anything seen for more than a second, particularly a tail, is met with a rush of bodies, group sighs and a thousand shutters clicking. At least at the beginning. By the end of the trip there were about five of us at the front of the boat (and two of them were lying on a bench clearly praying for a merciful God to end their suffering, even if it meant being attacked and devoured by the whales). The back of the boat really was a triage unit, filled with sick, sick blokes.

People wonder why anyone would hunt poor whales. Some say blubber. I say unmet expectations.

I had hoped to write a lot of "final thoughts" about Australia these days, as I leave on Saturday. But, as you might imagine, it's been pretty busy. The time will come.