Wally phone home
The indentured servants are rooting for wrong-way Wally. May he find his way home.
Wally is a 26-foot-long gray whale.The lost fellow is nosing into inlets and harbors in the balmy Mediterranean Sea trying to find its way back out to the Atlantic after veering thousands of miles off course. If you know any geography, the Mediterranean has one way in and out from the Atlantic and that is through the strait of Gibraltar, which narrows to 8 miles across. It’s about the distance between the WI State Capitol and West Towne Mall. A veritable pinhole.
Gray whales were pretty much extirpated 300 years ago in the Atlantic by whalers after its lamp oil. They figure Wally’s home is in the Pacific but that went through the Bering Sea around Alaska where the eating is good, took a right turn at the Arctic Ocean and then another into the Atlantic all the way down to the tip of southern Spain. Kind of doing a reverse Magellan.
The Wall Street Journal reports that Wally went through the strait and swam to Italy before doubling back along the French and Spanish coasts toward the Atlantic. What makes the story heart-rending (or “rendering” as mother used to say) is that gray whales are not fans of the Mediterranean diet. (Great photo of a scientist approaching Wally along the shore.) Wally is reported to be dangerously thin and may be scouting out a good beach upon which to die.
Scientists suspect retreating sea ice allowed Wally to venture into the Atlantic, which is full of the food his kind eat. Last week a juvenile minke whale swam up the Thames and entertained Londoners. So something is happening out there.
We recall the sad story of an infant whale, orphaned, and bumping up against ships hungry for mother’s milk (which is the consistency of toothpaste, it’s so fatty). Have to remind ourselves that these things are mammals. (They’re related to hippopotamuses but more closely to dolphins and porpoises.) Whales are known to teach, learn, cooperate, scheme, and grieve, Wikipedia tells. (More on Gray Whales)
Blaska’s Bottom Line: We confess, we needed something else to worry about today aside from Liz Cheney, Israel, lumber prices, critical race theory, and Aaron Rodgers.