Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Day 8: Kisses in Taiji

Each day in Taiji is different, yet each day in Taiji is the same.

Now that I've been here for a week some things are becoming routine. At home I enjoy going to sleep with my iPod. It helps to relax my mind and put me to sleep. Well for some reason the opposite holds true here. I suppose that makes sense since I've left the real world and traveled to the Twilight Zone. Now I find my iPod very distracting. Without it, the second my head hits the pillow I'm out like a light. Long and emotionally exhausting days probably help with that. I have the strangest dreams here, too. What's more strange is that I often can't differentiate dreams from actual occurrences.

I go to sleep around 10:30 or 11, and start waking up around 2 or 3 in a panic, wondering if I missed my alarm and overslept, abandoning the dolphins while they're fighting for their lives in the cove. This happens a few times, until eventually I just get up. I think my alarm has woken me up twice since I've been here.

Then we leave the hotel and wait. The police meet us at our lookout in the morning to see who's around and what's going on. This is a part of the routine I enjoy. They're very kind and it's nice to chat with them. It's also nice to know they're close by since so many locals are openly against us here.

Today, thanks to a bit of wind and rain, the boats stayed in the harbor. This obviously made us happy, and it also pleased the police to know that they wouldn't have to follow us up the steep stairs of Takababe! It's a win for us, the dolphins, and creates and easier day for the police. Plus, less dolphin meat traveling around the markets means less mercury poisoning, so really it's a win for everyone!

Watching the banger boats in the harbor, enjoying the wind and rain!
While Rosie and I sat in our cars at the lookout this morning, a Japanese woman came walking down the hill. As she walked past our cars she made a point to lean over and smile and wave to both of us. Obviously she knew who we were and why we were there, so the fact that she made the simple gesture of a wave and smile meant a lot to me. About 10 minutes passed, and the rain had picked up. The woman returned, walking up hill with a plastic bag now in her hand. She walked to Rosie's car and gave her the bag, and then looked over at me again, pointed to the bag, smiled, waved, and walked back down the hill. After she left I found out that she'd given us a big bag of Hershey's Kisses! Wow, what a meaningful gesture! It made this all the more bearable and gave me hope that we can and will see the end of dolphin killing in Japan. Change cannot come from the outside, it must come from within, and her actions strengthened my hope that this can happen - there are people here who care. I am keeping one kiss as a memento to look at when I'm feeling overwhelmed. This is a battle I would fight even if I knew we were going to lose, because it's the right thing to do, but keeping faith that we can save lives certainly helps the day by day.

P.s. I forgot to mention in yesterday's blog that a monkey - a macaque to be exact - crossed the road in front of my car. Very cool :)

The dolphins are safe for another day - Happy Time!

No comments:

Post a Comment