Monday, 14 September 2009

Golfinos! Golfinos!

Saturday saw a sleepy Hanli drag her weary body out of bed at 5 in the morning, still dark- cold and a little misty. Quick shower to wake up... fins, suit, weights and water. Let the adventure begin!

Together with Danish diver friends Morten and Astrid I arrived at Steve's house, bundled into his bakkie and headed north, his big beautiful ANIMAL OCEAN boat behind us. We arrived at Yzerfontein on the West Coast just after sunrise, kitted up, launched the boat and headed into the mist.

As we sped over the green-blue water, I remembered my first real dolphin encounter, on the Azores, the beautiful Portuguese Islands slap bang in the middle of the Atlantic on your way west. I spent a magical month there some years ago, diving with a passionate oceanman called Norberto. And every time I see a dolphin I hear Norberto's voice echoing in my head- 'Golfinos! Golfinos!' Portuguese for Dolphins. And from that first cry of GOLFINOS to today, I just love these happy, friendly, crazy, athletic, smart, lively, naughty, intuitive MAMMALS!

So as the first cry went up- 'There they are!' I was ready! Dolphins all around us. My first experience of Dusky Dolphins, beautiful, small agile little friends coming up close, scanning me up and down, double take 'who are you, funny girl'? And so we play. Until they decide to continue their mystical mission and leave us stranded silly in the middle of the sea, still smiling sheepishly, harldy believing that yes, once again I've had the privilege of encountering some of my favourite friends!

Video taken by Steve from ANIMAL OCEAN, check his site for more pics and ocean adventures!

We start up again and headed further out to sea.
Dassen Island.
A small flat island covered with seals, penguins, pelicans and other smaller birds. The water around the island teems with shark-life, fish and kelp forests. The visibility was over ten meters- glorious! Steve shot a yellowtail and a Hottie, and Danish Morten shot his very first African fish!

1 comment:

  1. You've probably already seen this, but I was simply blown away by the footage and calmness!