It was a significant birthday for my Dearest Husband. Since his life’s ambition was to play golf at Pebble Beach, I made the terrible sacrifice and accompanied him to California’s gorgeous Monterey Peninsula. During his first golf round, I suffered through a session at the spa. During the second, I went kayaking on Monterey Bay where I encountered marvelous marine life.
The sea lions. Incredibly noisy, they are surprisingly nimble on the rocks and sleekly beautiful in the water. They paid no attention whatsoever to my little kayak.
The otters. These furry aquatic mammals sleep floating on their backs with their paws crossed on their chests and their back flippers sticking straight up. They wrap strands of kelp around their middle to anchor themselves in place. Occasionally, one would rouse from sleep to groom herself before snoozing again.
The harbor seal. My guide and I paddled over to the rocks where the seals usually hang out, but there were none to be seen. Disappointed, we headed to where a raft of otters were sleeping in the kelp and stopped to get a good look at them. As I floated there, a harbor seal’s head popped up five feet away from my kayak. I looked at him and he looked at me and I said, “Hello.” He disappeared under the water. I bent over to peer down into the water in hopes of seeing him swim by. All of a sudden he came up from under my kayak so we were virtually nose to nose. I’m not sure who was more surprised, but it was a magical moment as we looked into each other’s eyes. He disappeared again in a flash of spots, and then I felt my kayak start to vibrate back and forth. My guide laughed. “He’s scratching his back on the bottom of your boat,” she explained.
They call me the Seal Whisperer.