Workshop and Whales


It is very difficult to sit in a lab and spout Shakespeare. In fact I would consider it almost impossible. Shakespeare requires, demands rather, a more suave and philosophical atmosphere. Im thinking – diffused lights, wine and banter …
Last week was a culmination of all my work of the last few months and in saying that I really mean that I, along with other people from work, was shipped off to a seaside resort. None of that secret agent kinda thing, more like a lot of Physicists gathered to ‘chat’ about ‘theories’ and ‘practical application’.
Whale watching was on the agenda and although this could well mean sitting around gawking at more ‘well fed’ members of the group, it actually involved going out into the water on a ferry yacht type and looking around for ‘there she sprays!!’.
The experience itself was exhilarating! I love the water and everything it has to offer, this does not mean I take a shower ten times a day, it more like I love wandering on the beach, the calm waters extending far beyond the horizon, watching the sunlight shine off the ripples and generally enjoying the peace of it all. I also prefer vast expanses of water unadulterated by sky scrapers on the horizon and Hervey Bay, Queensland offered just this!
Now to the whales. What size!! One should be astounded and humbled by these massive creatures who inhabit the deep, dark oceans. Their speed can be deceptive though, they are gone as fast as they come!
Physicists are funny whale watchers. The tour guide said to us in no unclear terms “whales respond to noise so make some and wave your arms around and they will come to you” and we, the physicists, stood there listening and sort of nodded and acknowledged the information and stored it away in the ‘useless trivia’ part of our brain. There was no noise and even less arm waving!
The whales still came and showed us that nature extends far beyond the realms of Maxwell and Electromagnetism.

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