Tuesday, September 19, 2006
A Whale of a Time, or your money back
Last Saturday, despite my vicious cold/flu/sicky-type thing, I decided to be a good sport and go whale watching.
Well, I shouldn't say I was being a good sport. I've always wanted to go whale watching and when Cat and Chris (Ross's sister and husband...er, Ross's sister's husband, not Ross's husband...that would be Jeff) told me that was in their plans I knew I was going no matter what. Sure, bobbing up and down in the Georgia Straight while I should be under the covers in bed sounds stupid, but stupid is usually fun!
First problem though, was transporting the clan down to Steveston. I have my weeny car and there were 5 of them. So how many Scots could we fit in a Neon? The day was starting off like a bad joke.
While I contemplated stuffing Ross in the trunk, the others came to a solution. Since Ross's mum is the tiniest, she would lie across the others in the back. Like so:
Meanwhile, I had Ross's dad in the front with me, giving me driving tips. I'm pretty sure his parents had somehow heard through the grapevine that I was a "crazy" driver. Well, I proved them wrong...except when I almost hit that pedestrian. Do you know how hard it is to drive under the speedlimit? Especially whilst sick? I think I deserve a medal.
Of course, the drawback to my Speedynessless (it's a word, don't worry), was that we were late for the trip. And did you know that there are THREE Whale Watching places in Steveston? I didn't even know there was one. So for awhile there, it looked straight out of a Marx Brother-esque comedy. The 5 Scots running around the docks of Steveston, searching for whales, throwing Chinese children out of the way and nearly slipping on disembodied fish parts. Or maybe that was just me.
Anyhoo, to make a long story short we made it on the boat. But because the boat was nearly full, Ross and I had to sit in the open back area.
"You'll get wet," the Naturalist, Jasmine, warned us.
Yeah, yeah, we thought, bring it on! This 40 foot long, half-covered zodiac was nothing compared to my zodiac in which I have risked so many lives and cell phones.
We were soon joined by "The World's Best Grandma" (or so her sweater said) and what must have been the World's Best Daughter. They were obviously from the South (accents and such) and they too were warned by Jasmine.
"You will get wet back here. Cold and wet."
Yeah, yeah, yeah they said. Actually, it was more like a hearty "Whooo hoooo!"
Jasmine walked off, her wetness scare tactics having no effect on us.
Then we were off to a roaring start. The sea was angry that day, my friend. The waves chopped against us and as I watched crystalized ginger being passed around the front of the boat, I started to fear my cold/flu/sicky-thing materializing itself as vomit.
Thankfully, that feeling past, and all I had to contend with was using Ross as a shield to the cold wind, smiling reasuringly at Ross's parents who kept looking back at us with worried faces and searching the Gulf Islands for the gentle giants of the deep. Yup, just waiting to see those black dorsal fins break the surface, the Orca's leaping magestically, the dolphins running for cover. Any minute now.
Four Hours later, after zooming down through the Gulf Islands to the San Juan Islands and back, there were no whales to be seen and Ross and I didn't even get the teeniest bit soaked. How utterly dissapointing.
Apparently, they have a 90% sighting rate. Well they lied. But they do have a guarantee: If you don't see any whales, you get a free trip on the house.
It's true. In fact, Cat and Chris used their free trip yesterday. And guess what? No whales. It's a conspiracy, I tell ya.
So, Ross and I have four more whale watching passes to use for ourselves (since Cat and Chris are jetting off for other lands) and we'll probably use two of them when we go whale watching with his parents. Again. This Saturday. And there better be some freakin whales this time.
Otherwise I'm gonna put Jasmine in a whale suit and throw her in the ocean.
Who's cold and wet now?
Whales, where art thou?