Wednesday, 8 June 2011

Out of the Blue

It has been a different trip altogether since we said goodbye to Renato (Papa) and Fernando and welcomed Randy and Brittany on board. Upon leaving Quebec city we began to vacate the narrow confines of scenic St. Lawrence and advanced towards more open waters at the river mouth, nearing the ocean. With every nautical mile convenient marinas and anchorages became more scarce and we embraced the idea of moving ahead without stopping overnight. Oh, and did I mention it was getting colder by the minute? 
Gaining ground was still dictated by the tides, which we played to and made the most of the currents that carried us. Some 8 hours outside of Quebec we decided to anchor for a while to wait out the rising tide, which was inhibiting our progress forward. Just as we cozied into a quiet bay, and reveled in the serenity of our surroundings, unassuming and graceful beluga whales began to break the surface of the water, some 100m away from the boat. We freaked, quietly of course. Springing up and out of the water, their snow white backs and fins gleaming in the setting sun granted us with a stunning spectacle. A helpful young man that worked a marine shop in Quebec told us that if we tap on the boat we could entice them to come closer. Beluga whales apparently are curious creatures and would pop out near the boat to check out what was going on. He also told us we're likely to see Humpback whales come up to feed in the rip tides and shallow waters. He demonstrated this by spreading his arms, opening his mouth and with a dull yowl he swept his head right to left, imitating a surfacing whale. Being of a larger stature, the plump man did the sea creatures justice. Or at least we imagined it might look something like that. We remembered the advice and laughing at the precision with which he mocked the whales we tried getting their attention, but to no avail. 
Bobbing gently on the waves in that cove, surrounded by the trappings of a world so distant to us just a few weeks ago, we celebrated embarking on this leg of the journey together. The change of scenery contributed greatly to how we experienced the next leg of the trip. But even more so it was the change of crew that was paramount to our success during our first atlantic passage. With a more focused company we were able to fall into a stoic existence aboard Rodeo, allowing the boat to carry us on, through hell and high water. And boy did we got a taste of both.

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