Saturday, 10 May 2014

Wow Moments

I have seen in the past how we can all become blase' about common, to us, sights and views. I have lived in some beautiful regions of the world that because of my familiarity with them, don't always appreciate the richness of the place or action around me. This richness has to be pointed out to us as a reminder of how lucky we are to be alive where we are. I have also noticed that events that may be spectacular to me might be so common to other creatures that they don't even pause from their feeding or life to take a look.
We were touring the countryside east and south of Edmonton last weekend when we came upon a huge flock of feeding snow, white-fronted, Ross's and Canada geese. When I stopped to snap a few pictures, about half the flock lifted off in a flurious cacophony of trumpeting and flapping. The grazing cow did not even raise her head from the fresh green grass just emerging from last autumn's stale wheat stubble.
Is this cow so used to this spectacular sight that she cannot pause for a moment to take it all in?

This scene reminds me of a rhinoceros auklet that I once saw while on a tour with a boat load of guests in Johnston's Strait on B.C.'s west coast. We had just finished our lunch and tea while floating upon a beautifully calm ocean all the while watching birds of all types diving into balls of bait fish. Eagles soared down upon flocks of feeding gulls, murres, murrelets and phalaropes, scattering them in panic for fear of becoming eagle food. Bald eagles lifted off the water with claws full of herring, full power on, heading to tall cedar dining. Suddenly, all the birds lifted off in panic and a second or two later the water erupted. Like a large island emerging from the deep, humpback whales soared into the air in a mighty surge of strength. The whale was almost totally standing on its tail above the water. As human observers, we were stunned. What sheer power and speed it must take to lift 30 tons of whale totally out of the water. Why would it do that? In one of the most amazing feats of power, strength, grace and exuberance the whale soared skyward several times within a couple of minutes. Floating between our boat and the acrobatic humpback was one rhinoceros auklet going on about it's business with now concern or flapping of amazed wings. Perhaps the auklet thought; "that's not so great, I can dive, swim float and fly. Lets see that humpback do that!"
I do hope that I can remember and be thankful for all the amazing sights we could see every day if we just pause to take a look. A good friend of mine once said: "it would be a different world if people had to stop to chew their cud and contemplate!"

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