I am on a family trip with my mother’s parents, namely, my Boogie who remains my most loved relative. The man who fostered in me a love of science, bird-watching, rock hounding, flight and wonder.
We are on the coast, along the inner edge of the Puget Sound, enjoying a meal of mussels and Dungeness crab at this tiny little seaside restaurant. After dinner I head out onto shaky docks behind the establishment. Boogie warns me that there are orcas in the water, and that I should be more careful, but I ignore him, and run further out, away from the shore. The orcas take note and begin to agitate the section of dock that I am on, and I get as low as I can, fearful that a wave-hunt may be in progress.
They eventually succeed in knocking me into water that on the surface is calm as glass. Many times they brush against me, and I am terrified I might become some sort of amusing snack, when one grabs me by the foot and pulls me down. Certain it’s all over I stay as still as possible as they pull me out a ways before letting me go. It felt much like I was being placed there.
I instinctively understood that I was being invited to dance with them. The surface remained so still, only breaking slightly as each whale took its turn breathing, while underneath the water, bubbles foamed in green clouds around spinning black bodies. It was one of the most beautiful things I have ever witnessed.