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Saturday, August 16, 2008

Whale Watch - Yikes!

We've been on whale watches here on Cape Cod for the past two summers, and they were WONDERFUL! So when we were gifted a freebie whale watch off Provincetown this summer, we were all psyched up. The weather was "iffy," but after driving over an hour and seeing glimpses of sun peeking out, we climbed aboard the little boat with high spirits.

Now, the folks at the ticket office DID say it was a bit rough out there - and they DID offer dramamine. But they did NOT tell us "if you stand on top of the boat you will be utterly soaked because we are heading into 4-6 foot waves!" Naturally, we hadn't brought towels or new clothes (nor did anyone else) - and it was a helluva ride.

Lucky for us, we all have pretty tough stomachs. But of the four of us only Tom truly, truly HATES fast amusement park rides and roller coasters. And this was like an hour-long roller coaster ride with no way off! The poor kid was panicked and in tears almost all the way out... and we were stuck outside because there was NO WAY we'd be able to make it down the stairs without killing ourselves.

Finally, we got out to the Stellwagon banks, where the whales feed. Lucky for everyone, a lovely humpback decided to perform for us - doing full-body leaps out of the water, rolls, and flipper waves. But in the past we'd stayed out on the banks for 45 minutes or so, observing lots of whales. This time, just the one. Tom did tearfully watch and say "it's cool" - he really is a huge whale fan.

The way back, fortunately, was smoother. And, though we're not ABA parents we DID offer a big reward to both kids for great behavior. By the time we were back on shore, Tom was totally over his fears and all was right with the world. The sun had come out, and we watched the gorgeous dunes and light houses slide past...

An amazing thing, how Tommy can absolutely freak out one minute, and be over it the next... He talked about it a bit later, but in fact - at soon as the waves ceased, his anxieties did too.

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