Posted by: Shanie Matthews | September 1, 2010

A Seagull is Glamorous by Any Other Name

“Aaah. Las Gaviotas!! ¡Que Linda!”

The people were going crazy. I don’t think they had ever seen a seagull before.

All of a sudden, the bird that was deemed a dirty, dumpster bird in other lands, seemed to have found a place where it was loved. Loved to be fed that is.

We were traveling the green-blue water of Lago Nahuel Huapi up the channel leading to Chile. Argentines, Chileans, Columbians, Ecuadorians, the list goes on, all stood in line waiting to hold a cracker up in the wind and wait for a seagull to dive bomb and steal the stale bit of starch from the squealing tourist. It was free food for the bird and a quick few bucks for the entrepreneurial camera man calling himself a guide.

The circling seagulls did make the travel a bit more entertaining, I must admit. And truly added to the surrounding natural beauty.  Their white wings flowed with the lenticular clouds forming thin, floating cap formations in the pink, purple hew of the fading twilight.

I gained some respect for las gaviotas that day on the boat. They were a smart, agile bird that knew how to work what it had going for it. Here, behind the tourist ships of Lago Nahuel Huapi, it is a star of its own theme attraction, as it dives and soars with the wind current behind the tourist’s boats, and then sneaks in with a side draft and steals the tempting snack from the out-held hand.

Even saying “Gaviota” sounds more glamorous.


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