For the best few days, as I made my early morning run along the beach and across the headlands that overlook Dana Point Harbor, I have kept a sharp lookout on the ocean. The ocean has been flat, pacified, and still: perfect for finding the spouts of the California gray whales as they make their annual migration. This weekend and next is the annual Dana Point Festival of the Whales. Alas. No whales! To be sure, they are somewhere in that vast blue sea but it appears that a strong current onshore might be pushing their huge bodies further away from the coast. Guess these mammals didn't get the memo that this was a command performance and thousands would be on hand to cheer their journey. Reminds me of the swallows that are supposed to come back to Capistrano every March. Nope.They don't show up either. The swallows now prefer to nest in the overhanging eves at Mission Viejo Mall. Perhaps Nordsrom is a bigger draw than the Mission of San Juan. No matter. The humans will continue to gather. I rather like the notion that we can't command nature to appear at our beck and call. Whether a whale or a swallow - it puts us in our place to realize that the natural world responds to its own urgings. Humility is good for the soul. And so are the gatherings of art, music, and parades that accompany festivals. Happy Sunday.