Updated: 25 November 2011
Louise here, on a boat for the first time in what seemed like decades. It was my birthday and (although I didn’t know it then) it was the day that took my breath away.
Incidentally, it’s the only time I’ve been on a boat and haven’t been sick over the side, or into a plastic bag (or cup, school bag, sleeve etc). We were on a whale watching cruise in the Southern Ocean off Albany, Western Australia, on a glorious spring morning.
I’ll never forget it. The skipper spotted whales and we headed off around the cove. The boat was full of chatty parents and over-excited children. As we got closer to the sighting, the skipper cut the motor and we drifted, still chatting and all watching with cameras at the ready. The whale was a juvenile, quite small (apparently) yet when it swam alongside the boat it dwarfed us completely. With one flick of its enormous tail it breached and in that instant, took my breath away.
It was the most spectacular sight I’d ever seen and I was aware of the awestruck silence on the boat. No one had needed to quieten the crowd. No one had needed to hush us. Children and parents stood in stunned amazement with cameras still dangling from wrists, staring and frozen in time.
We were tamed by beauty.
We were in awe of a wondrous creature in it’s natural environment. It was quite simply stunning and graceful – beauty in it’s purest form.
The trip encouraged me to deliberately slow down and start to notice beauty again. I remembered its amazing presence and power. The power to quieten, the power to heal, the power to connect, the power to inspire, the power to cut through the layers and touch the core of you. Somehow I’d grown up and away from the days of marvelling at dragonfly wings or an unfurling rose and just got too busy with my mundane and ‘important’ life. I forgot that beauty is everywhere.
This blog is not a search for beauty, it’s a remembering. I’ve remembered that beauty is with us (and in us) all the time and can often be found in the most unexpected and everyday places. Beauty isn’t reserved for those special days on the Southern Ocean. It’s here now, we’re just all too busy to see it.
Take some time out with me to remember beauty. It’s worth it. Enjoy.
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