Thursday, September 20, 2012

Setting records

Our swimming partners
We thought it was pretty hot in Disneyland on Friday.
We were going through our bottled water likes fishes and sweltering in the ride lines despite every effort to be dressed light and stand in the shade.
So it was no surprise to find out later that the Los Angeles area set a record for a high temperature of 106 degrees.
Our patience expired. Our air conditioner in the condo died.
(And salespeople outside of Disneyland have told us whatever temperature it is on the outside, it's more than that inside the parks. Something about thousands of people all sweating at once as they pay the extraordinarily high prices for treats, lunch and souvenirs.)
But that wasn't the only record we set on our trip.
We also ruined Captain Tom's spotless record for sightings on Monday.
"I can't believe it, folks. This never happens," he said after we'd spent more than three hours and cruised over 26 miles of ocean looking for dolphins and whales. (We did find some lazy sea lions on the harbor buoy, does that count?)
"But I think we're looking at a "no-sighting sighting" tour here. In the six years I've worked here, this is a first."
We'd signed up for the tour figuring it would be a good way to kill the afternoon and see some of the deep blue sea.
We hadn't really counted on seeing a blue whale but after Captain Tom announced that his friend had called in saying there was a big one a few miles away, we were intrigued.
The captain called for a vote. We could go see the dolphins a few hundred yards out — which were a sure thing — or we could motor on out about another 12 miles and maybe see the blue whale.
The rest of the tour folks voted for the blue whale. Marc and I did not.
So we set out on a voyage that proved fruitless, except for the stupid sea lions.
Captain Tom was embarrassed and apologetic.
He gave us free DVDs of sightings that had been made over the past five years. He gave us brownies and offered half-price return tickets. He said "Sorry" about 30 times.
On Saturday, we went back — partly because we were Disneyed out and mostly because we wanted to see if it would happen again.
This time we saw bottlenose dolphins, brown Risso dolphins and common dolphins with little baby dolphins swimming alongside.
No blue whales but it was still glorious. They swam. They flipped. They turned over and laughed at us.
It was great.
I just hope Captain Tom learned his lesson: a dolphin in hand is worth 10 blue whales in the sea.

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