Saturday, March 10, 2012

My Whale Experience

So, yesterday I showed you our anniversary I will explain to you why I'm going to miss the whales so much.

Back in our Waikiki days Roger used to dive 5-7 days a week and I would dive 4 days a week. I  was always excited when the whale season came around. 

There you are, floating weightlessly and you hear it, the whale song. It sounds nothing like the taped whale song you hear, but none the less you know it's them. For the rest of the year the ocean is pretty much quiet. Maybe the occasional sonar beep, tank banger or the grinding sound of the fish eating the coral - other wise...silence. Hearing them always put a smile on my lips and joy in my heart. 

In all my dives (1000 plus) I never saw a whale underwater, never saw them breach or have them come close to the boat. Roger had that luck, I hadn't.

One day Roger and I were getting ready to lead a group at Kewalo Pipe. He was already in the water and told us that you could hear the dolphins chattering. 

Now dolphins don't like the sound of us breathing underwater, the bubbles and the sound we make when we inhale...they just don't like it - they tend to stay away from us. But to hear them is special too.

The Captain and I get all the people in the water. I finish up, jump in and Roger and the group were gone, no where to be seen. Visibility was low, I couldn't see them anywhere so I start making my way, trying to find the group. I could hear the dolphins clicking away, endless chatter.

All of a sudden I hear the low moaning sound of whale song. No, let me rephrase that. I hear and FEEL the low moan of whale song. The sound was sooo strong that I felt it vibrating in my chest. 

For those of you that don't dive, sound travels 10x's faster underwater and it is impossible for the human ear to determine which direction it comes from. The call I was hearing was so loud, so close, that I was sure if I turned around the whale would be right behind me...but he wasn't. 

I say he because, as I have been told, only the male whales sing. 

Anyway, I continued hearing the whale singing  and I kept turning around and nothing was there. 

Then when I turned around for the last time the school of Hawaiian Spinner Dolphins I had been hearing the whole time swam right past me, maybe 8-10 yards away. I stopped in my tracks, just floating there...halfway between the surface and the sandy bottom....feeling the song in my chest and watching the dolphins frolic and chatter as they make their way across the pipe. Vanishing into nothingness.

Shortly after the group appeared and we surfaced together. They didn't see the dolphins and didn't experience the whale song like I did....It was a special, magical, just for me moment that I will always remember and always feel vibrating in my chest when I think about it....

And now you know...why I'll miss the whales - once you've experienced that, you'll always want more.

Aloha a Hui Hou!

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