I went to Oslob, Cebu, Philippines — for whale shark watching last week. Butanding is the local language for whale shark (Rhincodon Typus). I wanted to exchange blessings with them.
With Michelle and Jerry – a tour guide and a driver – I left Mactan at 5am.
Deciding not to plunge in to the water, I didn’t bring any swimsuit. Ok, a boat was rented….
The boatman is part of the conservation team…. See the T-shirt worn.
Many people already swam around something…. A group of butanding enjoying their breakfast
The gentle giant was peeping below my boat. Please let me offer you my love, dear butanding….
Look at the spots on the body….
…. on the tail
He is deeply, seriously giving his blessings…. Or her blessings….
Blessings to the feeder on the boat….
To the onlookers on and beneath the water…..
And, to me….
Before I finally left the site, I put both my feet into the water and prayed in my heart, telling huge blessings then leaving them into the sea. Thank you, butanding…. For the blessings we exchange.
Singapore – February 15, 2015 – 4:48am
For more information about whale shark, please go to: