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There were so many great displays of animal life at the beach. Leggy water birds foraging in the sand and greedy seagulls begging from beach goers. An osprey swooped down into the dunes just off our porch for a land rodent. There were sand dollars revealing themselves at low tide and pre-historic looking brown pelicans riding the air currents and diving for fish in the surf. For the first two days of vacation I wondered, where are the dolphins?

Finally, while looking out over the calm water where the pelicans were diving, I saw the dark form of a dolphin dorsal fin breach the water. It is true that people see dolphins when the dolphins decide to reveal themselves. I’m guessing they were engaged in fishing along with the pelicans.

The thrill of seeing a dolphin in nature is something that will never get old for me. The breech of a dorsal fin causes my imagination to kick into high gear. I wonder how many dolphins are in the group, are they eating or playing or keeping fish in the area for the pelicans? Are these fins attached to the same bodies that popped up out of the water yesterday? I think of all the documentaries and stories about dolphins and wonder if they have a message for me.

This photo is from the deck of a boat during a tour of Charleston harbor. The dolphins engaged around our little vessel multiple times, and I was thrilled to snap this shot near the end of the tour.  I send energetic thanks the animals that are willing to share themselves. I pause to allow the surge of excitement to lift me up. I reflect on the simplicity of sharing space in the home territory of the dolphins. We have a lot to learn from the animals about simplicity and sharing space.

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