When my hands are busy my mind is free to reach for new horizons. I draw myself into this orbit of concentration, engage in meticulously organised physical activity and in a parallel world my mind goes wondering, where it will go, where it will go…*
Imagine you are a one-celled organism, swishing your tail through the primordial soup. What would you see way back then. Would it by little more than bare rock still steaming or would it be a dense life teeming? May I leave that to your imagination?
On Dolphin Address you won't find protests against the horrors inflicted on dolphins and whales. Not out of uncaring or indifference. But because it smothers the celebration that is part and parcel of the cetacean world as well. Because there is enlightenment and healing to be found and because particularly for my bipolar brothers and sisters, dolphins indeed can save lives.
If ever Dusty aspired to be a glamour girl she had her chance this summer in Doolin Harbour. The pier provides an excellent view upon near and far, the ferries were affectionately welcomed by her and to the waiting passengers she was an exiting side-show. Moreover the landing down the steps was a favorite meet and greet and to the aquatically challenged the slipway gave a trustworthy wave shade.
Like the seagulls collect at the beachlet at Doolin Harbour, so the crows spread across the stone heaps that boarder on the tourist territory. But this is no more than a fake dispersal.
A brutal and cold breeze is chilling up the ripples at Doolin Harbour. It's the tireless oppression of the elements that marks the quandary to either stay snugly ashore or to take to the surprisingly clear water, knowing that later, for hours, you'll be presented the bitter shivers of the après-nage.
As Doolin Harbour is sheltered by the pier, and as a bay, by Crab Island, one would assume the water to be clearer than in the sea about. Alas, it is not, instead it rather acts as a bin, an eyebrew for the ocean's frown. And this is devastating the visibility. Add to that the churning of the ferry propellors that largely spindrift confettied seaweed through the brine and you have the very reason for me venturing out as far as my wing carries.
Of course you can see it as a commercial circus. Masstourists who are shipped on wobbling boats to exotic portrayed destinations like the Cliffs of Moher and the Aran Islands. They stand packed, resigned on the concrete pier and wait their turn to possibly return puked.
For twenty years now I dress like a dolphin, have been in the water in all kinds of weather, summer and winter, but here and now? The day before yesterday I had to crawl across the shallows like a shrimp, stripped from all my dignity. And that on my 64th, humiliating!
This afternoon I was hardly in the water or Dusty presented me with one bottle with a string on it. According to my own sermon I twisted the cap off and left it to sink (see discussion on the Facebook page of 'Dusty the dolphin' (with spaces, the other one without spaces is a commercial tourist-oriented enterprise) at the photograph by Virginia Turbett).
Because Dusty isn't always there and because, when she is, an effective way to draw her attention is to ignore her, I like to dwell on what else is sleeping on the seabed.
Little words this time, but all the more to watch. The recent beautiful weather was good for some playful videos of Dusty and friends.
Everybody wants to touch the dolphin. She does permit that, but only in small measure. One should never touch her blowhole. It is her immediate lifeline and besides, it's very impolite to stick your finger into someone else's nose.
For most outsiders of the water Dusty used to be little more than a dorsal fin and photographs of her were at best the last tip of it on her course to submerge, due to the focus lapse most compact cameras require.
The water is crystal clear to the very bottom and lights up in soft greens. Then Dusty swims by, sleek and silvery, slender sunlight undulations sliding along her grace like a golden shroud.
Today is exactly ten years ago that Dolphin Address was put on the internet for the very first time although then it was published under the auspices of 'Irish Dolphins'.
Advertising your honesty may very well have the opposite effect. But what if you are and need to let this know. That about sums up the problem I face when I have to go to Dublin.
Walking down the stumble path, every stepping stone tried that offers foothold and each mistake painfully remembered. Unlocked with safe steps and enjoyed with feet dancing. Each day more flowers, startling blue gentians, timid violets and naked primroses.
Recently the American Association for the Advancement of Science has decided to consider cetaceans as non-human persons and protected by their own Bill of Rights. Truly a generous gesture of mankind, that is if at least this would be substantiated.
If you want to manipulate gravity of course you can use apples. But by hanging eight kilos of apples on to your weight belt you don't have the same result as with eight kilos of lead. As for weight, above water you do, but under water you have to subtract the weight of the water, displaced by the apples.
If that apple had fallen beside the head of Isaac Newton, would we now be conscious of gravity? Of course it’s not right to exclude such an essential phenomenon, but gravity is not as self-evident as it seems.
Actually you're hardly taking a breath, as normally it's there, right in front of your nose. And it doesn't involve thinking. Only if you do you might get short of it.
I wouldn't ever consider to dedicate a Dolphin Address to a discussion on a subject like kidney dialysis. If not my outdoor existence had prompted me to exceptional adaptions.
In a survey about the trek of grey whales along the west coast of the United States an observation was made of a flukeless individual that nevertheless kept up with the pod. That sounds astonishing, except that this can be explained.
Can a dolphin be bored? For sure they can! And they don't like it anymore than we do. In dolphinaria this is gratefully exploited. If a dolphin does not want to do a trick it's simply put in solitary confinement. That'll teach it.
A furious off-shore wind picks up distant white crests that look like a wide spread of seagulls. Closer to the shore the surface smooths in the lee of the rocks, but is heaved by swelling water mountains.
Admittedly, 2011 was a lean year for Dolphin Address. Fortunately, I can blame myself. To be more precise, it's all due to my kidneys.