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Angie enjoyed her ‘Motel 6-at-the-end-of-the-run-way’ experience and despite the activities and Amtrack had slept like a log! In fact, she complained that there were not enough planes landing and trains whistling for her to get a decent video. She had taken up a spot by the swimming pool from where she could record the plane appearing from over near by buildings and watch them skim the top of the Motel’s palm trees before skipping over the airport boundery wall where the howl of engines switched to reversed thrust announced another safe landing. She was having a great time reliving childhood memories of Sunday afternoons with her parents plane-spotting at Cologne Airport.  All good things come to an end and so I dragged her away to another non-cactus related memory of my past California trips.

For this we had to go back in time to 22 February 2008, to the day that Alain Buffel and I forgot our age and had a day being kids again at Seaworld. That time it had been a rainy start to the day and still early in the season. This time many kids were on holiday for the Spring Break, and the weather was fine.

We headed to the Dolphin Stadium and made sure that we were sitting above the soak zone, so that our cameras would stay dry. Angie took video clips while I fired of 9 frames per second to achieve more or less the same result as the bottle-nosed dolphins and two pilot whales took turns with the trapeze acts and trained exotic birds to entertain us.

Next we moved to the Poles, where we first saw hundreds of penguins, except the Humboldt and Maggalenic penguins that we saw in nature in South America. I wonder why? Then on to the North Pole for Polar bears and Delphinapterus leucas, the Beluga Whales.

We went through the hall of mirrors and were unsure which of the deformed images was really us.

And then it was time for the Big Splash, a date with Shamu and the pod of other Orca – Killer Whales, once again in action after last year’s fatal accident that cost the life of one of its carers.

The 90 minute drive to Bellflower was without incident. Once at Eunice’s, we emptied out our cases and started the serious task of repacking all our clothes and souvenirs for tomorrow’s flight home.

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