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August 1, 2004

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nice finnish couple i met aboard victoria clipper lent me their nikon binoculars to look at looming mt. baker but there wasn't enough contrast between its snow-covered peak and the bluewhite sky to get a shot off and the boat was bouncing so i settled for this, canon zoomed 5x as we cut through rip tides and kelp. not long after, we slowed alongside a pod of 6 orcas that arched through the water with the regularity and grace of a carousel, up and down, tight together; all eyes were on them except for mine at times as i became a whale watcher watcher, amused by the humans and their predictable pack behavior. i'd never seen seattle from so far off, its tallest buildings dwarfed by Tahoma still another 60 miles beyond. the lesson i keep learning this summer is how the city--any city--is so small. this idea fit right in with my reading: Daniel Quinn's Beyond Civilization, picked up at Friday Harbor's excellent Harbor Bookstore. small though it is, my heart grew big when sarah, adria, and craig surprise picked me up at the dock and we went for a swim in lake washington with a 12 of PBR.