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View Diary: Our Cousins of the Salish Sea (37 comments)

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  •  My friend Kate sent me this (8+ / 0-)

    Said she:

    Ever since I was a little kid in Ohio, playing hooky gave me great joy (and relief).  School was difficult due to learning disabilities, poor social skills and the embarrassment of poverty.  There were no grown ups around to make me go to school.  My father was off to work and my mother didn't care.

    Early one cold February morning I joyously played hooky from an over taxing college day.  On a whim I took the bus to Golden Gate Park in San Francisco and wound up at the Aquarium.  It was Wednesday.  Free entrance.  In I went.  All alone, passing fish, eel, octopi and curious creatures of the deep, I came face to face with two dolphins and an otter…I think.  

    Those creatures paced back and forth.   Such claustrophobic quarters made me sad for them.  I began walking back and forth as they paced, trying to match their movements.  One dolphin came and stared deep into my eyes.  

    Soon she and I were in perfect sync back and forth and back and forth.  Easily prone to boredom, I began altering my pace.  Sometimes fast and sometimes slow.  Sometimes stopping suddenly. It became a game.  Back and forth.  Her strength and beauty amazed me. She never took that one gazing eye away from mine.

    She was a perfect match to every whim of movement I performed.  I'd lurch to screeching halts.  She'd skid to a stop right beside me.  Looking into my eyes with that big peering gaze.  

    Soon she was showing off.  She'd come to a halt then burst forward me trying to catch up.  Or she'd idle along as I ran my fastest suddenly bolting away as I panted behind.  I could imagine her laughing.  We played and played and played.  

    Eventually she rewarded me with a water show of flips and flops, back swimming, upside down, poking fun at the otter and lots of close eye contact.  My sense of time ceased.  Mesmerized.  

    I had no idea how long we played.  A raging hunger growled in my empty belly.  Looking up, a crowd had gathered on the stands watching us play.   At last I left, feeling that I had indeed made a good friend.  

    We all have so much to learn about the inner life of other beings.

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