Friday, June 4, 2010

oil slick & tar balls

The cruise I took last week followed a track around the island nation of Cuba. So, from Fort Lauderdale, we took a short jaunt to an island in the Bahamas. Then we sailed around the Eastern end of Cuba and tracked back to the west towards Jamaica. Then we skipped further west to Grand Cayman. A little past the southwestern tip of Cuba, we stopped at Cozumel. After leaving Cozumel, we sailed back east across the northern coast of Cuba, just east of the Gulf of Mexico for a full day at sea.

There was a period of time during that sea day that I sat out on our balcony looking out at the ocean. It was the last day of the cruise, which always brings some sadness. I was gazing down at the water when I noticed that the surface of the water had a strange sheen to it that I did not remember ever noticing on any of my prior cruises. I stood up to take a closer look. My neighbor happened to be out on his balcony. He asked me, "Does that look like oil to you?" It did. I nodded my head. The pattern in the sheen could not have been the result of just water.

Watching CNN coverage of the oil spill off the coast of Louisiana, one would think that it is not possible that we could have seen oil on the water that far south. But I truly think that we did.

This morning, tar balls began washing up on the beaches of Pensacola. If you've never vacationed on the west coast of Florida, this may not bring tears to your eyes like it did mine.

I am completely amazed that there are multiple people who shamelessly pontificate about the harmless nature of this oil spill. "There is always some oil naturally spilling into the ocean from oil sources." "Five years from now, this oil spill will have been naturally absorbed." "The liberal media is already running the sad pictures of the birds covered with oil, all designed to convince people that this is a catastrophic event." Logodaedaly usually amuses. In this case, it just makes me furious.

My prediction is that British Petroleum will ride this out with very little consequence. I do not trust politicians to hold BP accountable. And I believe that lawyers could keep any final decisions in stasis for years and years and years.


....Vicki Bergelt said...

I am originally from the east coast of Florida and now live in Arizona yet feel your pain.
Will we ever know what we are doing to the world before it's to late.
Whenever I get the chance, I go to the ocean and breathe. I watch the waves and the fish, stingrays, etc.
I can't imagine seeing the things your seeing. You must be so enraged and sad.

OyaSophia said...

It is pretty ugly! Thanks so much for your comment, Vicki!