The seas were glassy calm, itself a rarity in these stormy climes of February, so we could see every last detail of the sea surface for miles. We saw a tiny shark laze around the boat, and then we saw a slightly bigger shark laze around the boat. Sea lions surfaced here and there, appearing to enjoy the calm seas as well. Then, far off in the distance, a rumbling began, a terrible thunder that shook the hull to its resinous core like great Zeus himself was unleashing a vengeance upon the sea, the likes of which man had never seen.
Perhaps that’s a bit of an exaggeration, but we did hear some splashing off in the distance and looked up to see a giant pod of hundreds of dolphins storming our way. When we first saw them, they were a mile or so off and crossing, but as we gained on them, they seemed to make a turn and come right for us. All the while they were crashing on the surface, leaping and diving with furious speed. They seemed to be traveling as opposed to feeding, but wherever they were going, they wanted to get there fast.
Our trajectories remained aligned, theirs northward at a staggering 20 knots and ours southward at a slightly less impressive 2.9 knots. Finally, we collided. Not physically, thank god, though I was a bit nervous that we might bottom out on a porpoise shaped speed bump. They raced by, squealing and hurtling themselves skyward in what looked to be a grand display of pride in their own speed and agility.
It’s the first time that our cute and lovable friends the dolphins appeared more like the Mongol hordes storming a lone and helpless traveler out on the Asian steppe. Luckily they had other fare in mind and they let us live to sail another day.
*If the video doesn’t show up at the top, try here.