Monday, January 28, 2008

Otter in a Stormy Sea

It's still raining. We've had enough rain to bring us up to average rainfall totals for winter here. But it is still not enough yet to prevent water conservation measures this summer. If things continue as they seem to be going now, though, Santa Cruz may finally see its water supply full. It is interesting to have so much rain falling in such a short amount of time. We try to get out and walk when there is a windy lull, which there happened to be on Saturday.
We headed out to the wharf, where we noticed this little sea otter riding in the waves. We said to each other that it seemed small and young. So I started to snap a few photos when it started to make plaintive cries.
I turned on the video to see if I could capture that sound, but you'll notice all we got was the sound of the wind. I think if you watch the video closely, and I apologize for the lousy quality, you'll see the otter raise its head several times out of the water. That's when it was crying. What a sound it was, as high as a gull's cry. Then, we noticed a larger otter off in the distance dive down under the waves.
Maybe we're making this story up. But it looked to us that the larger otter came over and brought the smaller one some food. A very kind and motherly gesture. We watched for a while.
The smaller otter stopped crying, and the larger one stayed a while beside it. We think that face has a very satisfied smile on it. But that could easily be an anthropomorphic assumption. Still, it's a story that works for us.

A few updates: We are fairly certain that the large fossil we found is whale bone. It was much too large and heavy for us to move. The beach is only accessible at minus tides, and the fossils are only sporadically uncovered and visible, as the sands shift often with storms.

The sunset photos were slightly (ever so slightly) enhanced by saturation, but that was only to recreate the sky as we saw it. Photos hardly ever represent what our eyes perceive. I tried to show what we saw. It was truly magnificent, and yes, almost psychedelic.

Finally, could anyone out there tell us succinctly what Barack Obama's platform is? He won a very great victory in South Carolina on Saturday, and we are glad for him. He's getting a lot of endorsements, and a lot of people talk about how he makes them feel, that he's inspirational, shows leadership, and who he reminds them of. But we're not sure he is a progressive liberal Democrat. Does anyone out there know for certain that he in fact is?

Sometimes we feel just like a little otter, out in a stormy sea.

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