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How Whales Helped Me Find a New Home

Time 0:02:50


After finishing my thesis and the last exams to obtain my degree in biology, I did not know where I was standing anymore. I had worked myself very hard and I was feeling aimless. I lost interest in things that would normally never fail to make me happy. I
needed out.

I chose Iceland for its remoteness, for a down-to-earth life on a farm. Each day, I worked with the horses. Horses have a special way to see right through you, to see your true emotional state and their behaviour will reflect this back to you, like a mirror of your soul. Their behaviour would always tell me where I was standing emotional-wise, if I was moving the right way.

When I came back to Germany after a year, I almost felt like being on another planet. Everything was more crowded, more hectic. I could not see myself getting back into that life, so I decided to move again. I was lucky enough to get a Work & Travel visa that would allow me to live and work in Canada for a whole year.

I got my mind set on the idea of working on a whale watching tour boat. I randomly wrote e-mails to Canadian tour boat operators. I had received lots of no’s and maybe’s, when Molly Bawn Whale and Puffin Tours offered me a job. I was going to spend the summer in a place called Newfoundland, a place I knew nothing about but that there would be whales and that they have big black hairy dogs.

The job turned out to be super awesome. I was finally able to make use of my university knowledge when explaining our ocean life to passengers. I had many great moments especially with one humpback whale who was in love with our boat. He loved drifting there until everybody leaned over the rails, only to come up just then and blow his fishy breath into everybody’s faces. One day, he swam close up to the boat once again. This time however, he looked me in the eye and started emerging slowly, lifting his snout up higher and higher until it was only a meter away from my face, where he stayed for a while. It felt like he was looking right into my heart.

Loving Newfoundland more and more the longer I stayed, it gave me back a long lost sense of home and made me want to stay here, permanently. I got lucky, found a sponsoring employer and became a permanent resident. Now all that is missing to make it perfect is a little piece of land to grow things and to have a couple of ponies next to my house by the sea.

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