“I can’t promise you that we’ll actually see them,” Jason said. We nodded our understanding and climbed aboard the motorboat, cameras tucked safely in a rug-sack. Just in case.
We had been out with Jason and his boat Ivanhoe several times before in Gansbaai, South Africa. As we launched from the pier, we reminisced about a previous trip to Dyer Island where we witnessed a shark leap out of the shallows and snatch an unsuspecting seal sunning on the rocks. It was a sight to behold, but this time we weren’t here for the sharks.
The wind was calm but picked up once we motored out of the harbor and headed northwest along the coast towards Hermanus. Jason had his camera handy as the pilot slowed Ivanhoe down and turned the motor off. Then we all looked out across the sea and waited. Nothing. But Jason and his team do this almost everyday and knew what to do next.
The pilot started up the motor and we cruised a bit further along the coast. And that's when we saw them — a small pod of whales that had come to calve and mate. This is what we had come to see.