Captain! Thar be whales here!

Last night, Non Birding Bill and I were taking a romantic stroll down Sandbridge Beach in Virginia and watched a storm head out to sea and lines of brown pelicans fly overhead. As we turned and watched a large line, I saw what I thought was a large amount of water spray into the sky. I asked Bill, "Did I see what I think I just saw?" We both tried to brush it off as "It's just dolphins" but then we saw the large hump come out of the water--it was a whale quite close to shore! It wasn't long before other people noticed it and someone in the know confirmed that it was indeed a hump-backed whale (like the one in the Star Trek 4). We went back to the beach house and got the rest of Bill's family and watched the whale for the next hour. It even poked it's massive head out of the water. I of course tried to digi-scope it and discovered that whales are infinitely harder to film than birds. But I have a nice blurry lump to commemorate our impromptu whale watching. As if the evening couldn't get better a black skimmer flew by--I love those birds! I had never seen a whale in the wild and it was just as exciting as seeing a new bird, I haven't been this excited since the first time I saw a goshawk in the wild.