The Perfect Backstroke
26 March 2015 | Isla Isabela
Isabela’s magic is irresistible. We’re on anchor in a peaceful harbor with a rough and jagged natural wall of black volcanic stone to our side. On the wall sit dozens of blue-footed boobies with the brightest blue feet imaginable. There are also prehistoric-looking iguanas, two and three foot long, black and camouflaged. Between the wall and our boat is a pure aqua blue channel that supports a myriad of amazing creatures, including giant stingrays five or six feet across.
This morning, after a radiant sunrise, I cleaned Centime’s waterline from the dingy. As I pried the dark green algae loose, three one-foot long, striking, black and white fish came over for breakfast. Next three cute black and white penguins swam by. Five minutes later a wave pushed the dingy a foot way from the boat. I hung there half suspended with my hand in the water, lying on the pontoon, when a sea lion swam around me. He had a perfect backstroke, chin and head high out of the water, slowly swimming by, stretching his neck to look up at me from his upside down position. He swam around and around for fifteen minutes or more, eyeing me and frolicking around the dingy. Can’t stop smiling.