Saludos from Ojo de Liebre, Home of the Grey Whales!

Petting grey whales, clamming and steadying friendships in Baja California...

Sunset over the Pacific, a truck camper, volkswagen bus and their families surround

By

Before we can set up camp, Wylder wants to go down to the beach. He tugs at me and I give in, camp can wait, or someone else can set it up. The boys and I dig through the mucky sand at low tide and find a dozen or so clams, still closed.

Wylder jumps in the shallow salt water. Winter runs back to meet the Mali Mish clan, now down on the beach and collecting clams of their own. Dan spots a grey whale, spewing water into the air as its back surfaces every few minutes for air.

a young boy walks a sandy beach
Wylder combs the beach for clams. We’re later told that clamming, or collecting shellfish of any type in Mexico, is illegal. We’ve yet to verfiy, but I can attest that they were indeed tasty.

A German man stops by our campsite, also on an extended vacation away from his current home in British Columbia. We meet a Canadian kid from Alberta, driving a VW Bus to Guatemala. Canadians in general are abundant. A small restaurant just down the sandy road from where we’re camping sells cheap and delicious fish and shrimp tacos. A young Mexican man named Luis takes us out on a small boat to get a closer view of the whales.

We see an albino whale.

“Ballena blanco,” Luis points, “aqui.” He doesn’t speak much English, but translates, “White whale.” It’s an albino grey whale.

Later a mother and her baby approach our boat. He urges us to touch them. And we do. And the mom blows her mist all over us. And the baby raises its head to say hello.

a mother and child photograph a grey whale as it is directly under their panga
Marlene and the kids take their shot at photographing and touching this grey whale and her baby…after the dads have already jumped in and taken their turns first…

We share the clams that both of or families found on the beach. A little gritty, but all the more delicious as the sun sets over the Pacific even as the near full moon rises beyond the desert.

This is what I’d imagined in every way. Children splashing in the sand. Meeting new and foreign people. Free clams and Mexican beers. Easy living.

Thoughts of never leaving prevail. They likely won’t be fulfilled. But they do, indeed, prevail.

Luka, Wylder and Winter evoking their imaginations in whatever way the sand might afford.
Luka, Wylder and Winter evoking their imaginations in whatever way the sand might afford.
a man and a teenager looking over the bay
Dan and Tristan will prove to have enough in common that the two often outlast even myself, chatting up solar panels and cell phone cables well into the night.
two men stand in front of a truck camper parked along the beach
One of us always seems to have a beer in hand…
...but then again, we've all got our addictions, whether it's alcohol, milk or smartphones.
…but then again, we’ve all got our addictions, whether it’s alcohol, milk or smartphones.
my two young boys on a sand dune
Winter and Wylder debate jumping from the sandy cliff to the beach below. These two can be the best of friends…when no other option presents itself.