WAIT FOR IT…!!!
Small kine* advice from my personal experiences and some whale watching tips.
(*a little bit)
I’m super excited as my friends and I join others for a day on the water, it’s whale soup out there in the Maui basin this time of year, and anticipation is running high as we look about for a spout, a tail, a pectorial fin or breach, anything and everything keeps us on the edge of our seats. And there we sit… Waiting…..Waiting…..Waaaaaaitiiiing… per usual I get fidgety, I look down at my phone or away for a second and BOOM!! Everyone is cheering and whooping at the incredible breach they just saw, Aargh!! I whip my head up or around just in time to see the tail end of a splash, what a horrible feeling of disappointment.
Lesson learned: Be patient!!! If there are telltale signs of a whale’s presence, it’s worth the waiting, waiting, waiting!! A funny joke I heard asked, “How long can humpback whales stay under water?” The answer is about five seconds longer than the human attention span… So true! So patience definitely pays off and saves your neck from what I call WWW (whale watching whiplash), too.
Leave the Cell Phone in Your Bag
Another not fun lesson learned… I used to have my cell phone up and ready only to realize afterward that all of the magnificent whales I just saw were only 3” tall. Unless your cell phone is your camera, don’t even get that thing out or at least make a deal with yourself before you set out to only use it part of the time. Witnessing humpback whales in all of their glory simply does not happen if everything you see the entire trip is through a 3X5 inch screen.
Instead, fix your eyes on the water, the horizon, anywhere the whales might be for you are blessed beyond measure to witness something truly spectacular that most people will never see in their lifetime — so see it for real! Capture that moment and let it be forever emblazoned in your mind’s eye. It’s humpback whales for goodness sake!
I’m in no way suggesting you never take whale-watching photos. I have much respect for the avid photographers who either live or travel here every year and I’ve seen mind-blowing whale shots by them that rival National Geographic. All I am trying to say is don’t let the experience pass you by without taking moments to simply cherish what you are so lucky to be a part of.
The best advice from lessons learned that I can give you is BE READY FOR ANYTHING! The whales might mug your boat, they might decide to spend an hour or two just cruising alongside you, they might be stinkers and dive deep every single time without so much as a tail slap, a momma whale might lift her baby up on her nose to give you a better view. Can you imagine a mammal as big as a school bus coming up out of the water only a few feet away?! You might get whale splashed or you might get rained on. You might get great photos or empty shots. Who knows what your whale watching adventure will bring? So simply be prepared by bringing your patience, sense of adventure, be ready for anything and above all know that it’s going to be
legen… wait for it… dary!*