Breast-feeders of the sea
In Hebrew, the word for mammal is “yonek”, literally ‘breastfeeder’. Therefore, the dolphin and whale survey team from IMMRAC (Israel Marine Mammal Research and Conservation) officially study ‘Marine breastfeeders’. This morning I woke up at 5:00 a.m. (did you know that the sun comes out of the earth every morning?? I’ve never before witnessed this miraculous phenomenon) to join these illustrious porpoise patrolers on their hunt for the elusive lactating marvels of the deep.
Our Odyssey began as we boarded a plush Hunter 36 sailboat in Hertzellia and pushed forth into the unforgiving open sea, where we sailed around bronzing ourselves in the Mediterranean sun and occasionally feigning interest in some distant patch of the horizon. We also got to wear cool binoculars around our necks the whole time! Sadly, 1 m seas and building whitecaps made minced-meat of our efforts by surrounding the ship with thousands of life-like ‘dolphin mimics’ made of sea foam, which we were unable to distinguish from the real McCoy without specialized acoustic equipment. The day is yours, Neptune.
Anyway the survey was cancelled after two hours and I drove home. Hopefully, I’ll see some dolphins on the next one.
In other news, yesterday was the hottest day of the year here. 38 degrees C (100.4 deg F) in the shade. I am still trying to get my left thigh unstuck from the driver’s seat of the car.