Anori Outtakes: Shards from Fernandina

Anori moments heaped together like rocks in a caldera:

“The trail just fucking vanished.” Ethan had turned around, oblivious to the blood streaming down his thigh.

“I’m too old for this shit.” She grabbed at Apollo stupidly. “I’m not letting my cat, my longest fucking relationship that I will ever have, fall down into a fucking death like this. It’s such fucking bullshit.”

She missed her next grip and slipped forward, losing everything in her head, suddenly connected to nothing, about to fall into nothingness, and swung horribly on the rope and banged her face into the cliff. fernandina_volcano_ecuador_photo_chuck_wood_1978_si“You are the misunderstood adventurer, is that it, Ethan? You’ve sailed around the world looking for yourself and found cold and misery instead.”

He unwrapped the paper from another sandwich. “This spot is perfect. Maybe one of your iguanas will wander in.”

Dee was happily tired, oddly so, looking out over the volcano, thinking that life had ended or might go on forever.

A Galapagos Tale

We visited Fernandina Island in the Galapagos some years ago at Christmastime. DSCN2016Among the thousands of the iguanas, blue-footed boobies and tortoises, the animal I remember most is an abandoned sea lion pup.

Alone on the rocky lava flats, it waddled back and forth, calling for its mother. DSCN2380No matter how much it squeaked and bleated, there was no response. None of the other sea lions showed any interest, lounging instead in the sun. The only animal paying any attention was a hawk, sitting atop a dead tree out of the bushes. DSCN2376“The mother has probably been eaten by a shark,” our guide explained.

“What about the baby?” we demanded.

“The hawk will wait until it stops moving and then come down to peck its eye out.”

“That’s terrible,” we replied.

He shrugged. “That’s nature.”