There are some things in this world that just about everybody loves. Puppies. Rainbows. Sunsets. Politicians getting caught lying. Me making a fool of myself. You get the idea.
I think we can safely add another thing to that list: dolphins. Besides being the smartest animals on Earth, they are very playful and just plain CUTE! Getting to see and interact with one, especially in nature, is a rare treat that many have yearned for.
In my time in the Virgin Islands, I have been lucky enough to encounter dolphins in the wild not once, not twice, but three times! (They must be attracted to clumsiness.)
The most recent of those times was just eight days ago. While sailing the 40-mile stretch from St. Croix to St. John, a pair of dolphins swam up to my boat and proceeded to frolic all around for about 45 minutes. It was unforgettable!
The icing on the cake was the weather: it was dead calm. Now, for a sailboat, this is not ideal (we had to motor most of the way). But, for photographing underwater critters, it's perfect! The stillness of the water allowed me to see the dolphins easily even when they were deep underwater. That made it much easier to follow them and capture them at just the right moment when they breached the surface. In addition, the calmness combined with the unusually thick cloud cover created what were honestly the most surreal conditions I've ever seen in ten years in the islands.
Take a look and see for yourself. Please view the LARGE versions where applicable, as they do the photos much more justice.
Until next time, take care! I'll be back soon with those landscape images from St. Croix that I talked about last time. ^_^