When I went to Alaska on an UnCruise trip, I saw many creatures including whales, sea lions, seals, eagles and more. But the animals that caught my attention most were the jellyfish. They were so simple yet beautiful.
I spent many afternoons memorizing the scientific names of Cyanea capillata (lion’s mane jellyfish) or Aurelia labiata (moon jellyfish).
However, the fact that struck me was the diversity I saw, even within species. The jellies could be big or small, tall or short, and the colored ones were anywhere from a pale, almost glowing white to a vibrant ruby red.
This made me think of all the people and creatures I met on this adventure and how they were all so different and yet worked and lived so well together. On the Wilderness Discoverer, there were people who were Italian, Portuguese, and Australian. There were people that were six, 16 and 60 and people that were shy, loud and talkative. Yet we all got along. Everyone always had a smile on their face.
I also observed animals behaving the same way, from the thousands of little sandpipers flying in magnificent flocks to the large humpback whales that played and hunted together. They too had learned that living together and accepting all is better than being alone.
Even humans could get along with the animals. Many of the creatures were not afraid of us and would watch us for a bit before plunging back into their world. The humans understood that we were in their environment and the animals understood that they were in ours. By accepting that, both creatures could better enjoy the beautiful wilderness.
Watching all these communities, human and animal alike, it makes me wonder what the world would be like if we could model after these groups. If we could all be like the jellyfish, with different colors, shapes and sizes and just accept all, and live in peace.
I’m so thankful that I had the chance to come on this amazing adventure and have it open my eyes to the possibilities of accepting.