Sunday, September 16, 2007

Cancun #10

Sea Turtles

After dinner, I walked down to the beach and offered a song for my brothers in the sweat lodge back home. We sweat every Friday night, so I waited for the exact same hour to make my prayer. I sang two of my father's songs, the Hawk Song and the Buttercup Song. The Hawk Song impressed me with its power and strength expanding over all the western hemisphere, and the Buttercup Song seemed to rise from the sea, reaching out with arms of compassion toward our children.

I finished my songs and returned to the hotel, but less than an hour later, my son Dakota came running in the room, breathless and excited.

He said he saw a giant sea turtle rising out of the water onto the beach by our hotel. We ran down together but did not immediately see anything. We waited about a half hour until we finally saw other turtles appearing on the water. At that point, a member of the hotel staff urged us to watch the turtles from above until they finish laying their eggs.

"After they bury their eggs in the sand," he said, "you can go down and photograph them, or touch them, or do whatever you want."

We watched one turtle for almost an hour until she finally left her nest and started back toward the sea. We ran down the stairs as fast as we could and got these two pictures. I wanted to touch her shell, but then suddenly I thought my presence somehow defiled this sacred encounter. I decided to stand by and watch silently as the giant turtle returned to the dark water.

To tie this whole experience together, I find it amazing that I sang my father's song and received an impression about protecting our children, and then a giant sea turtle appeared on that exact spot less than an hour later to lay her eggs. I was struck by the power and beauty of that moment.

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