Today was my first day in the water with Australian sea lions (Neophoca cinerea). Given what's going on in Japan right now, I've been struggling with whether to post photos or not.

On the one hand, it's difficult not to be preoccupied and worried about the chaos and confusion back at home.

On the other hand, no matter how bad things get, life has to go on, and there's nothing to be gained by being depressed.

I'm still not quite sure what the right thing to do is, but my gut instinct is to focus on the task at hand. When I get back to Japan, I'm sure there will be a lot to deal with, but for the time being, here is a picture I took today, highlighting one of the things that makes these sea lions so cute...whiskers:

Australian sea lions have lots of whiskers

It was a great first day. Somewhat windy and choppy in the morning, which resulted in less-than-ideal visibility, but the sea lions were cooperative, and we all had many opportunities to interact with the playful pinnipeds.