Posts Tagged ‘Ocean’

Dancing Crabs    (No Comments »)

Monday, November 29th, 2010

By Matias

In 2009 I spent 3 months sailing the south Asian seas with a group of 24 other people. It was incredible and put me in direct connection with the marine ecosystem. About 1 month into our journey we docked in the Maldives and spent a couple days around Male before exploring the other islands nearby. On one of the other islands is where this experience I’m about to share happened. Sound is a fascinating entity of our existence. We’re all connected to it one way or another, through hearing with ears or feeling/sensing the vibrations that sound creates. That night on this island 2 friends and I took small hand drums out to a small beach enclave that was protected by a protruding rock on one side and some bushes on the other. It was a little corner of beautiful white sand beach. We had been wanting to have a little drum circle for a few nights, but we didn’t expect to see what happened that night.  As we played longer and longer, the mood got more comfortable, and it almost seemed that we became a part of the nature that surrounded us. No longer separated by our conscious ideas and beliefs, we were just being. I took the hand drum and spun it around and began to sing into the hollow area of the drum, which created a droning sound that matched well with the other 2’s drumming. Sitting there we noticed that every minute or so, crabs would crawl out of the ocean and tentatively explore what was happening. Crabs are generally very scared of humans- any time I see a crab in nature, he is scurrying into a crevice so that I can’t grab him. These crabs began to gain courage, realizing we weren’t there to hurt them. We continued playing and the crabs began approaching and after a while they were just a foot or 2 away from us dancing with our rhythm. When I say dance I don’t mean it metaphorically or to sound nice in my writing, I mean they were wiggling back and forth, interacting with the sound we we’re producing, literally dancing. I felt very connected with the earth at this moment and continued putting myself into the moment and trying to just be as peacefully as possible. The drumming continued, evolving with changing sounds and rhythms, reaching a climax of energy and peaceful excitement. Then I noticed a crab 2 inches from my foot. It felt like this little crab had changed all his/her beliefs on interactions with humans. He would be the first crab in his line of crab families to gain the awareness to interact with me more personally, trusting in me his security. Guided by the rhythmic vibrations, he crawled right up my leg onto my waist and up my arm. He sat there for a few seconds before I lost focus and sure enough my energy probably transmitted that disruption to him. He ran off and most of the crabs shuffled back away to their homes. We are all connected, sometimes it takes an outside force (music) to remind us and our animal brothers and sisters.

Galloping on the Beach    (No Comments »)

Monday, September 27th, 2010

By Tobi

Some friends and I went down to Ocean Shores for a weekend, bringing our horses along with us. The purpose of our trip was to relax from an exhausting show season. What really sticks with me is not the “relaxing” part of the trip, but the excitement of galloping across the beach. Of urging my horse to move faster – literally as fast as he could go. The sand and spray on my face as we splashed through the shallow water and the sound of hooves on wet sand are still with me. If I had to choose a word to describe the sound of the hooves, I might have to choose something like “splack!” but it would be heard a thousand times, with the gentle roar of the ocean behind it. It was freeing, to just go and keep going, with nothing stopping us or making us want to stop. I was grinning from ear to ear, my heart pounding, and when we pulled up to catch our breath, it was like I could still feel the cloud misted space in front of me calling me further still, to the more isolated portions of the beach.

At one point we were trotting through knee-high surf, and suddenly, we splashed in deeper – my feet dipped into the water as my horse’s front two legs plunged down, soaking his chest. He immediately stopped, and turned around (as did some of the other horses next to us), and I just remember letting him take control for a moment. It feels like a natural yet peculiar kind of trust – the kind between members of separate species. He pulled both of us from the water, and then stood, considering our options. Seeing that two other horses were fording the deep section well, I asked him to follow them, which he did, charging across like a wave himself.

At another point, my horse braved some of the surf to follow our group’s mare (his pasturemate and “girlfriend”). During a moment of panic, I realized that he would follow the mare out to see if she chose to swim away. But even as I clenched my hands on the reins, I felt a sort of longing to have that happen. To just swim out to sea (with or without the horse). Like the idea of swimming out there and not worrying about coming back was tempting, although terribly frightening at the same time. In the end, both horses turned back to shore and we laughed about it.

All in all, I remember feeling really happy, basking in the thin sunlight (this was Washington, after all) between the sea and the dunes. It was much more rewarding than walking, and we were far from the sounds of motors and mechanical things. It’s an experience I plan on repeating.

The winding down of the chase    (No Comments »)

Tuesday, April 13th, 2010

I spotted a crow eating what I thought was a jellyfish at the shoreline. Eager to see more, I sprinted a couple hundred feet to the glistening black bird and its catch. The sand was amenable to my hard, fast paces and the water at the ocean’s edge clang and broke against my calves. I stopped a few dozen feet from the crow, not wanting to disturb it, by pushing my legs into the softer, dry sand, using it as nature’s cushion. The sand warmed my feet and I stuck out my arms to find balance in the uneven sand. I remember thinking, “So this is how a human comes in for a landing” and smiling. As I drew closer to the crow, I became quite happily overwhelmed with heavy breathing and a hot face, so I walked to the ocean’s edge and waited for a wave large enough to fill my hands. The periodicity of the waves and their crashing was a lull. When I splashed my face with the brisk water, my eyes were closed and my mouth was gaping, drawing in mouthfuls of air after the sprint. The water dripped into my mouth. It tasted salty, like sweat, and I didn’t mind it at all. When I stood up, the wind cooled my cheeks. I faced the ocean expanse. I had forgotten about the bird.