I sat on the verandah with my very good friend. We shared a laugh and a recipe or two. Normally it would be considered bad manners not to maintain eye contact but we knew each other well and neither of us could resist the view.
Our gaze wondered out to the East. We chatted on. The morning was clear and bright. The ocean smooth and glossy. A gentle breeze ruffled the shoreline and the wisp of coolness in the air reminded us that the season was changing.
Glinting in the sunlight , catching our attention, smooth backs and black fins sliced through the sea. The dolphins were back just beyond the shore break and today they were in a playful mood.
Most days at about this time the pod feeds on the schools of fish out in the channel behind the line of surfers. Swimming slowly in groups of 4 or 5 they surface, dive, surface. Drawing an imaginary serpentine through the top few meters of water filling their bellies as they travel. But today we had front row seats as the show got underway.
The spectacle that followed was breathtaking; athleticism like no Olympian you’ve ever seen; playfulness like a herd of miniature goats; and friendships built on trust and respect that lasted a lifetime.
Centre stage the first act rose up out of the water and performed a beautiful tail walk., his head nodding at his own brilliance. His friends applauded him as they surfed past on a wave like a well rehearsed and choreographed dance troupe. The water so clear it seemed they were encased in glass. Some more splashing, diving and surfing quickly culminating into a spine tingling crescendo as the lead dolphin leapt clear out of the water in a perfect air born arc and as his final act re entered the sea without a splash and was gone.
As the curtains lowered on the liquid stage we sat there in wide eyed wonder, smiling in the knowiledge that we had just been testament to a special moment in nature.