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Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Free Day

Friday we enjoyed an unexpected free day. Let's walk down to the dock and see what's happening.

We saw a couple kids had crawled out across the breakwater rocks, so we decided to do the same. Halfway to the end we stopped and sat down to look for some wildlife outside the harbor. Then behind us, between the breakwaters, we heard some water slosh. Spinning around we spotted a sea lion less than fifty feet away. As we watched he popped out of the water again with a fish in his mouth. Then we followed as he bobbed up and down on his way back out to sea.

He appeared and disappeared so fast that all the pictures we took captured only the ripples on the surface of the water where he had just submerged. He can be seen in the water directly below the center of the three mountain peaks.

We walked out to the dock under the bridge to watch the tourists arrive. A bald eagle greeted them all as they came ashore. We kept an eye on the sea and saw several more seals and sea lions. From atop the bridge we saw hundreds of jellyfish floating just under the surface. We also spotted several starfish and an octopus clinging to a rock under water.

Then the sea lion (or another one) appeared again almost directly below us. He swam under the bridge, and we ran across the street to follow him on the other side. He did some spins and floats and then took a deep dive and disappeared again.

For the rest of the day the sea lions appeared and disappeared. The tourists slowly went away. We went home with the joy and satisfaction of having seen more marine wildlife up close, and not in captivity or on a tour, but all by our own luck and observations.

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