I have the sense our chorus line of chanters dancing at the edge of the sea was an ongoing task, a commitment woven deep in the community where I lived. I was heartsick to know we had once been so connected, to know we had so abandoned the whales in our world today. I dreamed of setting up a place beside the sea where whales could come when they needed our help. We could feed them when food was scarce or midwife them when their young came too soon, scrape unwanted things from their broad backs, help the sick or weak restore themselves before they traveled on. We could offer shelter in a storm, learn to know them again, share our worlds. I met a woman in San Quintín who described her New Year’s Day at Laguna Ojo de Liebre where migrating gray whales break their journey. The picture she left in my mind is an expanse of still water with dark curve upon dark curve as far as you can see, the backs of slumbering whales in the early morning twilight. When I first dreamed of setting up a whale haven beside the sea, I held her image in my heart. I still do.
[Photo by Dave Weller at http://cmsdata.iucn.org/img/original/whale12_dave_weller.jpg]