It Took 29 Years To Happen

When I was a kid, my parents re-decorated our bathroom.

 

On the wall they hung a photo.

 

It was a photo of a grey sea, with a whale’s tail lifting out of the water.

 

Underneath, it said:

 

“He roams the sea in freedom, with no enemy – save man.”

 

It touched my heart every time I looked at it.

 

And I thought: “One day I will see that for myself.”

 

Over the years I’ve thought about it from time to time.

 

One day I will see whales in the wild.

 

One day.

 

Whenever the bucket-list question comes up –

 

Whale-watching is on mine.

 

When we’ve been planning holidays before, it seemed out of reach.

 

Either a long way to go to focus on something that might not happen.

 

Or that the weather would be cold, and as a Brit I chase the sun whenever I can.

 

This summer we had another bucket-list holiday planned.

 

California.

 

The whole family.

 

Road-trip.

 

Highway 1, up the coast, San Diego to San Francisco.

 

As it came nearer it seemed too good to be true.

 

I was almost afraid to think about it in case I jinxed it and made it not happen.

 

We started planning what we’d do.

 

As I looked at the places along the route, I found Monterey.

 

Home of an amazing Aquarium.

 

But also, home of whale-watching expeditions.

 

I did some research.

 

I wanted a wild experience, not a Sea-Life-esque one.

 

Two years a