Home now, I'm amazed at the press the protest has been getting. People, CNN, AP, MSNBC, Ellen. Hayden is everywhere, a real-life hero. Ric O'Barry, who stood by the cove alone for so many years, is thrilled. And as for me, when I try to sleep the image of those 10 pilot whales returns. They are raising their heads, watching us. They're wondering why we're there, but they don't feel threatened by us. A boat approaches. I lie quietly beside my sleeping wife and am shaken by a grief I can't explain.
There's a new development today. We hear reports that the Japanese have issued a warrant for the arrest of Hayden and the five surfers who crossed the net. The Taiji Six, my editor calls us. "I guess they could come here and get us, but probably not," Hayden tells a Hollywood reporter. "I was very excited that people were interested in what we did. In this town, you tend to only get publicity for not wearing underwear or going to rehab."
I call the Japanese embassy in Washington to see if it's true. I'd love to go back to Japan someday, and I don't want to spend my vacation in jail. I get routed to the economics desk.
"I am one of the six who paddled into the Taiji cove. I hear there is a warrant for me?"
"Yes. Ahh!" says the economics official. "You the one on NPR!"
"Yes," I say, grimacing. Two days earlier I had been on The Diane Rehm Show, blasting the Japanese whaling practices.
A cool silence.
"Look, is there a warrant for me?" I finally ask. "Can you confirm it?"
"I am sorry. That is an internal matter."
"Look, I have no beef with the Japanese people. I love the Japanese people."
"Ohh, thank you." He sounds genuinely pleased. "I love American people!"
I call Hayden next. "Is it true?" I ask her.
"I think it's true. But I think it's a scare tactic, so we don't come back."
"You wanna go back?"
"See you soon," she says as we hang up. "In Japan."