When I lived in Washington State, I loved kayaking with the seals and sea lions, in the bays and marinas, near my home. It was commonplace to see them. If they were not basking in the sun on the piers or buoys, they were swimming along side me.

I often wondered which one of us was most curious.

Probably me.

I spent hours watching them, and it seemed like we often took turns leading. I only needed to turn back if one of them tapped the bottom of my kayak. That seemed to be a message that there were young pups present. Funny enough, I think they knew I understood.

Little did they know, it was loud and clear.

I think if you want to partake in the company of wildlife you need to respect their wishes. I do.

Ten years later we find ourselves walking on the shores of La Jolla, California where these beautiful (and yes, stinky) creatures bask in their native habitat. Once again I am intrigued with how they communicate with each other, and with us.

These two seemed to be looking for the perfect wave. They would look at each other than look out at the surf, watch the wave come across their rock, and repeat.

Here they seemed to be playing king of the rock. Their barks at each other indicated they were on their way to battle, but the one on top stood his ground. Maybe the others were just complaining.

We spent quite awhile watching the conversation between the adult and the pups in these photos. The adult seemed to be yelling at the young and with so many in that pool, it seemed like a lesson at school. The second photo shows modeling the appropriate behavior.

This one is either playing peek-a-boo, or keeping a watchful eye for the seal that dove in that exact spot.

And this message was for us.

Wind Kisses, Donna