Saturday, March 28, 2009

A Love So Deep ...

Over and over I tell myself that today's blog should be about the

After all, the great whale migration has begun and we are in the
middle of it. How exciting! We mingle with dozens of other whale
fanciers who don't mind the drizzle and 48 degree weather. We chat
while continuously scanning the horizon for a speck of life or a spray
of water, the blow, that shoots up nearly 12 feet in the air.

But you can read about the event online at dozens of other places.
Just Google Gray Whale Migration and you'll see what I mean.

What you can't read about anywhere is the little boy who almost lost
his life and how really great his dad was about the whole thing. It
happened fast, so there's not much to tell. But, it's a great story.
A little boy is safe and his dad is proud.

Here's what happened: Allen and I stop at an oceanside bluff in
northern Oregon to just hang out. We walk the dogs over by the cliffs
and see a man and his dog scaling some rocks (see the picture) and a
couple of kids chasing the waves back and forth through the surf (wish
I had taken their picture instead).

I joke that the kids must be northerners because it's so cold, yet
they are in shorts, that by now are quite wet.

Allen goes back to the motor home and I hang out on the cliffs. I see
one of the boys climbing back up the hill and notice he is now soaking
wet. HA! A day at the beach and it's 48 degrees.

He's struggling up the steep incline, grabbing hold of bushes and
weeds to help his progress. He then climbs over the fence and stands
near where I am, to catch his breath. I notice he's wearing one
shoe. "I lost my shoe to a wave," he said, looking down at his feet.
"I lost my glasses, too."

Now I notice he's shivering. Oh, I think he's about to cry. I watch
him hurry over to his family's van, parked next to our motor home.

I tag along, a distance behind, and see the other brother is already
in the van, along with two sisters, a dog (named Maggie) and Mom and

I overhear the tale-end of the story: Dad is applauding his son's
bravery, his son's skill, for keeping his wits about him. It seems the
"wave" was an unexpected monster, one that knocked him off the rocks and tried to claim him for the sea. He
resisted, clung to the side of the rocks and then made it back to his family.

What I find remarkable is the dad chose to forgo a lecture on safety
to instead lift up his son as a hero. A hero who fought the sea and

What a great dad. I could see the kid was still shivering, sitting in
the backseat of the van, tucked inside a blanket. He didn't need to be
slammed for being stupid.

Oh I'm sure Dad will nail him later for carelessness. But, for now,
Dad knows it's more important to love that boy, because he is alive.


Grant Podelco said...

Having lived in Oregon for a few years, those "sneaker waves," as they call them, are very dangerous. There are a lot of videos on YouTube about them, but here's one:

Nancy K said...

THAT'S The WORD! SNEAKER! I heard his dad call the wave a "sneaker wave," but I couldn't for the life of me understand the word "sneaker." Thanks, Grant!