My arrival into Osaka was uneventful though my flight sickness was nothing to get excited over. Once through customs (without them even opening my bag or asking me to take off my backpack!) I wandered around the Kansai airport asking about trains and looking for wifi signals as Marley and Carisa (two fellow Cove Guardians, Canadians, and just plain awesome friends) were not meant to arrive until 9:30, three hours after me.
After a kafuffle with luggage being left behind in Shanghai we all headed to the airport hotel, promptly leaving after seeing the price per person and settled into the comfy aqua cushions in the Kansai departure terminal. The police did a quick whip round collecting passport numbers, names, and reasons for being in Japan. With them out of the picture we only had the cleaning crew and a few other stranded patrons for company. The others were able to sleep for some of the night but I remained awake, too wired to do anything else. After a nine hour flight with zero sleep and almost 30 hours of zero food I should have been exhausted!
Marley being the assertive and persuasive person she is managed to get us a route to Ki-Katsuura when I had failed miserably to communicate where I needed to go just hours earlier. Three trains and a bus ride later through gorgeous Japanese countryside we arrived at our destination. An eerie feeling came over me when we drove past the whale statues at the entrance of Taiji, as though I was on the set of a horror film.
Marley looking out the train window over the ocean in Japan
Once meeting Rosie (Sea Shepherd member and all around passionate person) at the hotel we headed out to find a room, being refused from one we tried another who attempted to refuse us but were able to call out his lies. The information desk at the station had called ahead for us earlier and were told there were plenty of rooms left, but little did he know the persons in question were SSCS supporters!
We settled in well after a quick explore in search of food and video taping the strangest moth that looked and behaved exactly like a hummingbird, though only an inch long he was very convincing.
I spent the remainder of the evening simply preparing mentally for what I might see the next morning, but nothing could have helped and nothing will ever remove what I’ve seen.
On the way to Katsuura
The best you can do help is to stop supporting all fisheries, all industries that exploit the earth. You may think that if you won’t buy dolphin and whale meat that you don’t support the slaughter and insanity but everything is intertwined. If you go to a dolphinarium, aquarium, marine park, or swim-with-the-dolphin program you are contributing. If you are buying any marine life you are contributing to the mass over-fishing of the oceans, which not only greedily take ‘food” for humyns but whose nets also kill on average 12-15 MILLION dolphins annually. If you eat other livestock you are still contributing to the fishing industry as the majority of factory farmed animals are fed fish meal (approx. 1/3 of all the world’s fishing stock is used for this, as well as used for domestic pet food and other materials).
Go vegan. For the planet, the animals, and yourself.
For photos and videos go to http://www.seashepherd.org/dolphins/cove-guardian-reports/ and follow @seashepherd on twitter for instant updates. We will not be releasing photos individually, all information can be seen through Sea Shepherd first. To become involved with the Cove Guardian campaign contact firstname.lastname@example.org for more information. Donations are always welcome and needed.
For the natural world,