Pawtucket, RI Comes To Florida and SeaWorld Part X of XIV: Slightly Used Dolphins

Aloha, sorry for the lapse. This is the height of the busy season. I’ve seen elaborate weddings, but was rather impressed with the recent full-scale carnival.

I also went to the make-up game between the “Boston Red Sox” and St. Louis Cardinals. I use quotation marks because the team fielded was advertised as a split squad (some people from the regular team, and some of the people from the farm system), but it ended up being all guys from the AAA Pawtucket Red Sox, some of whom got to play in the major leagues for a spell last year (Michael Bowden, Aaron Bates, Josh Reddick).

As these Spring Training games are more diagnostic then competitive in nature, it was quite a different atmosphere than Fenway Park. Here the capacity was 7,000, compared to Fenway’s 30,000+, which is tiny for a major-league ballpark. It had the energy and intimacy of a high-school game.

It was one way to pass an afternoon.

For those of you vicariously touring SeaWorld with me, our tenth stop brings us to the adult dolphins, who were quite different than their younger counterparts. The young ones had pristine skin, were inquisitive about the people who came to see them, and very playful with visitors and themselves.

In contrast, several adults bore scratches, and unlike the young ones, you were allowed to lean over and try and pet them. After a fruitless 45 minutes, I gave up trying to coax one to come over. While I was somewhat disappointed, it is fully understandable. I’d lose interest in people sticking their hands in my water day in and day out. It’s also important to note that a place like SeaWorld intends to educate and instill an appreciation of these unfamiliar animals. They are not actors and are not put on this Earth for my amusement.

The adult tank did have an underwater viewing area, and was much deeper than the young dolphin nursery. I was surprised the nursery tank was very shallow (maybe six or seven feet deep). I suppose it makes corralling the animals easier to perform health checkups.

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