Beautiful shot of Stonehenge on Solstice Day...
"Sea turtles, mate."
So. The day started off with a walk along the lava beds as I head toward Hana to get some groceries. There is very little sand along this part of the coast, though there was a most excellent little sandy cove right below my house, where I did lots of snorkeling. Mostly though, the lava had piled up right to the water when Haleakala blew up ages before. It was a pretty dicey route along those beds as the lava was sharp and jumbled and in places very treacherous, but it was also a shortcut to the village.
Reaching into my small pack, I pulled out my flute and began to play an impromptu tune. I took that flute with me everywhere back then. It was battered, dented in a few spots, and molded to my lips and my fingers. I loved that flute. Anyway. I'm sitting there, eyes closed, legs dangling, soft notes drifting, as I invent the song to express what I'm feeling in that moment.
Hearing a splash, not from a wave, I glance down while I'm playing and below me, treading water is an enormous, gnarly, grandfather of a sea turtle. And he's looking right at me. I stare, he stares. I lower my flute to reach for my camera. He hesitates for a moment than uses one huge front leg to turn away. I quickly start playing again, and damn. He stops and turns back.
I played my flute for that sea turtle. The whole time his gray, old head is stretched out from his wrinkled, prune-like neck, his eyes ancient and knowing as he watched me through hooded lids, and listened to the music. His shell was mottled, and scarred, and there wasn't--and still isn't--a doubt in my mind this was a very, very old creature. (The Hawaiian green sea turtle can reach 3 feet from stem to stern, and weigh over 200 pounds. This guy was every bit of that).