kokopellinelli: (LOL)
Today was much better than yesterday. Still foggy and rainy (though less so) and the water was very nice indeed. I hear the short trip even got into the face of Columbia Glacier.

I was on the long trip, we saw 2 humpbacks (which is like the first time in a week I've seen any) and a big piece of ice fell off of Meares. We only had 37 people today, so it was kind of a slow day, but still nice. Some nice people on board.

I did have one sort of odd encounter with an older lady today, though. We were at Meares, and I was outside in my longsleeve shirt and fleece vest, watching for any calving. This lady came out the door behind me, dressed in a sweater and long wool skirt.

Odd Lady: You are an Eskimo! I am a swamp thing and you are an Eskimo! *beams, wanders away*

Me: *le blink*
kokopellinelli: (Default)
Today was much better than yesterday.

We saw 3 baby (TEENY TINY) bears and a loon with loonlets, and 2 humpbacks, and SCADS of porpoise (some of them were swimming with the second whale) and 2 sharks.

And we got everything done on time.

And there was a guy who looked a little like Greg Kinnear on the boat.
kokopellinelli: (Default)
Okay. My day.

Late starting the first meal service.

Interrupted by transient orcas 2 minutes into the meal service.

5 minutes later, lady tells us that there is water pouring out from underneath one of the head doors.

Toilet is spewing water. Turn valve off, lock door.

Captain's microphone stops working. He cannot let everyone know what they're looking at. Therefore, in between all our other duties for the rest of the day, we're also having to walk around and tell people what we see.

Chowder is late getting started.

Bullhead is rolly.

Chowder is 30 degrees below temp. Therefore we have to pour the chowchow into bins and microwave it till it gets to temp.

2 minutes into soup service, a humpback shows up, interrupting us. AGAIN.

One cool thing: while I was out on the bow, the humpy surfaced 4 feet away. Fer real. Scared the bejeezus out of me, though.

And then we were doing dishes the rest of the way into town.

I told Chip that if he EVER AGAIN starts out a day by saying, "This is gonna be a bad day," I will strangle him and throw his body overboard.

I am in full-on Bobby Pin Stage*.

*Bobby Pin Stage: In reference to a time when my mother was young and her family was packing for a vacation or a move or something. Everything was ready to go, and my grandma was wandering around, lost, with a bobby pin in hand, wondering where she should put it. In short, a state of mind where even the smallest, simplest tasks take on Herculean proportions.
kokopellinelli: (Default)
Today, we saw otters, a humpback, 5 black bears, another humpback, Dall's porpoise on our bow, and a shark playing with a log. Those last three? All simultaneous.

Oh yeah.

We were also being videotaped all day from another boat because the footage is gonna be played on the Alaska One channel at hotels and stuff. Yay tourism.

And Barley is comin' home tomorrow!! YAAAAAAAAAY!
kokopellinelli: (Default)
I spotted a whale today! The first one on the boat to spot it! My first whale (that I spotted) this season! And my very first EVER humpback!

I saw a ginormous splash a long way off while we were at Bullhead, and I started lookin'. I looked for 15 minutes and saw NOTHING. Then I saw a black back. When I got my binocs up to my eyes, it was gone. Cap'n John asked if I was SURE I'd seen something. I was like, "Uhhh...I think so." So we headed out there. 15 more minutes and nary a PEEP. Just as I was giving up hope, I glanced out the port side window, and...THERE! 9 o'clock! I'M NOT CRAZY!!!

And there were some 9-year-old boys on the boat who sort of drove me crazy while I was at the helm.

Boy 1: Does this boat have a self-destruct button?

Me: ...Yes.

Boy 2: Where is it?

Me: Not telling you.

Boy 1: Why??

Me: Cuz you'll push it.

Boy 2: Why does the boat need a self-destruct button?

Me: What else would we do if we were attacked by aliens?

Then, John told them the self-destruct was on Nichole's shoulder, and she convinced them it was on MY shoulder, and all they had to do was press my shoulder REALLY HARD 10 times!


Me: *to Nichole* You're cleaning the heads tonight.


Me: What's that?

John: That...is a dead sea lion.

Boy 1 was on the boat with his parents and his sister, who has what I assumed is some sort of accelerated aging disease like Progeria or something. She was the sweetest thing ever, and though her brother was a little...trying, he was very gentle and loving with her.

There were some other kids on, too. A 2-year-old named Rylissa, and her 3-year-old brother. Her brother was VERY excited when we saw the whale. I was upstairs and he was downstairs, but every time the whale came to the surface to take a breath, I could hear, "WHAAAAAAAAAAAAAAALE! IT'S A WHALE! IT'S A WHALE! IT'S A WHALE!" The whale would go down again, and there would be silence, then as soon as it made another appearance: "WHAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAALE!"

Fun day. :)
kokopellinelli: (Default)
We saw 6 THAT'S RIGHT 6 humpbacks today. We saw the mother and calf we've been seeing for the past week in addition to a group of 4 more (and two of them were REALLY big!) and at one point, the biggest one exhaled and let out a noise that sounded a lot like a boat horn. It was odd.
kokopellinelli: (Default)

Today, Stan and Mary Helen's eldest daughter was on board with her family. Her youngest (3 and a half) adores me because I spent the Christmas party last year tickling him. He calls me "that tickle-mommy." He followed me around the boat all day, flirting and batting his eyelashes and asking me to tickle him. Ha. I learned my lesson at Christmas. If I'd tickled him today, he would have gotten so wound up he'd have bounced right off the boat.

In addition to the tickledemon, our day was quite eventful. Otters, sea lions, and eagles of course, plus that lost young gray whale that's been hanging around Bullhead, plus a humpback with a baby, plus some Dall's porpoise.

Oh, and did I mention that we saw an orca kill and eat a porpoise today?

Well, we did.

We were about 10 minutes away from getting back into the harbor, and we saw some porpoise. Stan slowed down to see if they would follow us, but they were speeding in the other direction, so he started going again. Then an orca came up among them, so I ran upstairs to tell him. He'd already started turning the boat.

At first, I thought they were just playing, but I was watching through the binocs and I saw the orca come up a few times and rush the porpoise, and then finally the porpoise was left floating, belly-up, on the surface, with its fins in the air, and I saw red in the water. Then the orca came toward it and when it went down again, the porpoise was gone.

Mary Helen insisted it was a couple orcas with some orca babies, but I know what I saw. And I had to keep reassuring the tickledemon's older brother that the orca was just playing with the porpoise, while surrepticiously nodding my head at the lady who kept asking if the orca just ate the porpoise.

So, yeah. Eventful.

October 2011

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