Finding a Whale

January 1, 2013

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People don't always believe me when they ask me about my day and I tell them what I did at work. Not through any fault of theirs of course, but our job can be extremely unique. A couple weeks ago Dianna Wray and I had quite a morning. When I told a friend that we had gotten up at 5am to go find a whale, he laughed. Then he saw the pictures.

It was a cold dark morning and I was waiting for Ms. Wray, half asleep, in my car in front of the paper. Once she crawled bleary eyed into my vehicle, we were off. The drive to Matagorda is a couple hours. We spent it making Moby Dick references and watching the world become lighter as we sped towards the coast.

When we arrived things got a little tricky. We got to the beach access point and looked around. No whale! Our assignment said the whale was 3-4 miles down the sand. We looked at my car, a tiny little blue fit which is cute but not able to conquer beachy dunes, locked it up and left it behind. As we walked, the sun came up over the water. We may have been up since 5 am, but it was still a beautiful day.

A few miles of walking and we found the whale and the crew there to do their job. We got to take photos and interview them as they performed a necropsy, a process I had never witnessed before. Though the smell was astounding, it was incredibly interesting to watch them at work. They had a real passion for a job that I had never even thought about before that day.

The return hike to the car was probably the hardest part. Soaked, smelling strongly of whale tinged sea water and sleep deprived, we made our way back. But once we got to the office, the entire newsroom was able to enjoy our flavorful scent as we put in the story and photos.

It was a long but eventful day. One I will never forget because it was the day we went searching for a whale.

This is why I love journalism. We go on adventures.