Gut Rumbles

September 04, 2008

they should know better

Originally PUBLISHED March 06, 2005

I'm SORRY (ed. note: link no longer active-story related to rescue attempt for stranded dolphins). I like "flipper" as well as the next guy and I've had dolphins swim close enough to me in the water that I was able to grab a handfull of dorsal fin and take a nice ride. I've also watched them hunt fish in teams.

Have you ever watched them do that in a salt water creek? Four or five of them will get together in a school of mullet or shiners and then swim together to make a wave that washes all the little fishies up on the bank. After that, they idle there and eat the little fishies when they flop back toward the water. It's a damned effective fishing operation.

Those fuckers have scared the shit out of me before. I was trying to don a pair of water skis in the Wilmington River one day, when somebody on the boat shouted "SHARK!!!" I looked around and saw this HUGE creature swimming right next to me and showing that dorsal fin above the water. I almost put on my Jesus shoes and ran across the water back to the boat, leaving a trail of bodily fluids behind me.

But it wasn't a shark. It was a dolphin, along with about four friends, just curious about what I was doing in their domain. Those critters do everything but sniff you like a dog when you're in the water with them. I got bumped and thumped and blow-hole drenched until I managed to get the skis on my feet. I yelled "GO!" and made that round-and-round motion with my hand that told the boat driver to hit the throttle.

I took off and watched those crazy bastards chase me all the way down the river. No... "chase" is the wrong word, because they could swim a lot faster than I was going. They were PLAYING with me, and they almost dumped me more than once. I was probably doing about 30 to 40 MPH at the time, and those beautiful creatures didn't even have to try hard to keep up.

They liked to hem me in on both sides, then have one of their buddies surface right in front of me. If I dodged HIM, they set up another plan of attack and came after me again. I really believe that they knew what water skis were and they were trying to give me a nice spill. Kinda like playing a video game for them.

I managed to stay on the skis and they got bored with the game after about 15 minutes. They swam off to amuse themselves doing something else. But that was a hoot of an experience. I've never "Danced With Wolves."

But I HAVE swum with dolphins.


GOT, I MISS THAT CRANKY OL' CRACKER!!! This story and "Same Old Same Old" had me laughing until I cried!

Posted by: the other Steph on September 6, 2008 07:36 PM
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