OK, somebody out there was NOT keeping their fingers crossed for me. The ferry from Tokyo to Mikura was canceled TWICE, leaving me to sit on the boat all the way to Hachijo-jima and then back to Tokyo, only to disembark where I started and get back on again for a 2nd attempt. The whole journey took 30 hours (it should only have taken 6). The weather was absolutely terrible on the 20th, and there was no chance of the ferry landing at the unprotected Mikura pier. The waves were monstrous, and the ferry was tossed around like a toy boat. There were plenty of seasick people on the boat, and I was also a bit queasy for a while, which is rare for me.
But the second attempt worked out, and I landed this morning on Mikura. All of my equipment arrived safe and sound, and I spent the morning setting up the new camera and audio gear. Our new camera is much clearer, which will make IDing dolphins much easier. I was lucky enough to catch an afternoon boat ride – the first ride of the season!
The weather was nice enough today – calm(ish) seas and a bit of sun. I saw plenty of dolphins – a good sign! Joo was there – she is one of my favorite dolphins, as well as Kitte. Also, an old friend – Sekapun – stopped by for a visit. She is always a big fan of the crazy circle swim, and today was no exception to that rule. I collected over 20 minutes of video for this trip. A fantastic start!
I am, however, quite tired at this point. After a celebratory beer at the new bar in town (to celebrate my return) I plan to sleep for at least 10 hours. We’ll see how it goes!!