Just For Fun~My creative blog for scrapbooking and digital freebies!
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Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Make Way For Ducklings

Heading to the elementary school to pick up Cayden and Sydney I saw a bus swerve a bit as it came toward me from the other direction. Crossing the street directly in front of me, and the bus, was a mother duck and her fuzzy little ducklings.

Argent used to be a calm street with a few cars every now and then, but due to the addition of many homes, Walmart, Lowes, McDonalds and all the other things I love, Argent is now a steady stream of motor vehicles. There wasn't anyone behind me so I stopped to let the little family cross. Most of the ducklings were in direct line of my tire so if I hadn't stepped on the brakes, well you get the picture. As the mom led her babies across several things happened, cars began to line up behind me (ducks don't waddle very fast) and Anderson began yelling, "Where's your camera Mom, hand me your camera!" (He knows I take that thing with me everywhere for just this type of opportunity.) By the time I dug the camera out of my purse the ducks were safely on the other side of the street and the lady behind me was shooting darts out of her eye sockets. With Anderson spouting off choice words of complaint and me snapping "Anderson, they'll be there when we come back! Where are they going to go, there's a fence up and down the whole side of the street!" we headed on down the road.

Of course this totally reminded me of the book Make Way For Ducklings (I always thought it was Make Way For THE Ducklings) anyway, I never liked that book as a child. It had too many words and all the pictures were brown. But I must not have hated it too much since I now own it and it is the first thing I thought of after seeing the ducks cross the street.

After picking up Cayden and Sydney the ducks were indeed still there. They were headed East down the side of the road along a chain link fence. The fence was put up several months ago due to construction of a new high school. I pulled the car over on the opposite side of the road so the kids could watch the ducks and Anderson could get his photos. Driving 3 miles an hour we watched as the ducks followed their mom. One of the ducklings, probably the runt, kept tripping over either little rocks or his feet and he would land on his back his feet spinning in mid air. Sad, but we thought it was pretty funny. After about 1/2 a mile the Mommy duck stopped and all her little chicks sat down and started chirping. The mom began pacing around, looking this way and that. It was then that it dawned on me, she was trying to take her children to the canal on the other side of the fence. Last time she had babies there wouldn't have been a fence, just a direct route to the water. They were almost there, the end of the fence was about 10 feet away from where they were sitting. In the car the kids and I were shouting, "Keep going! You're almost there!" But the mom looked around a few more minutes and then turned her babies around, back the way they came. There was nothing we could do! We were so sad. The only reassurance I had was that later that day when I drove down the road there was no sign of any dead ducks on the pavement. I can only hope the mom found an opening in the fence, somewhere.

So Sunday my brother Ryan told a similar story only his was far more depressing. On the same day that we saw our little family he was driving across the Blue Bridge. A mother duck was guiding her babies OVER the bridge! There were four babies trying to keep up behind her but sadly, Ryan said there were four little squashed babies behind them. People were slowing down and stopping, shocked at what they were wittnessing but like me, what could they do!? So as you're driving around this Spring be sure and stay alert and make way for ducklings.


Jan said...

Mattie is going to bawl her eyes out when she reads this post. That is so so sad Amy. I just feel for the mommy duck trying to get to the canal. And then Ryan. That is horrible. I am so glad I didn't see that one.. Glad that you took the time to watch the Ducks. It has several lessons in it for me. You should have shown them where "puddle ducks" was. They would have like that. This story does not quack me up at all. And your right about good ole Argent is changing daily. Love the post and you even got a book in there.

debsters said...

Oh my goodness! No! My stomach is in a big knot. You are right though, it's not like you could really catch them and lead them to safety, they had to make it on their own.
Argent is definately crazy these days. I do love all the things that have gone in on 68 and I love the thought of having the High School so close, but there's a price for it.

Movie Queen said...

I'm so glad I got to hear these heart-wrenching stories twice each. (Note the sarcasm in my voice.) It was no less sad reading about it, but I do love the Make Way For Ducklings reference. I laughed when you said you didn't like it that much as a kid because all the pictures were brown. I totally remember that!

Jodi said...

Oh, how sad for those poor ducks! What are we doing to their little world? And I think it's so cute that your kids were trying to help them by talking to them! And not to change the subject or anything, but Sydney told me Sunday that you and I wanted the same thing for Mother's Day...a nap. Did you get yours? I sure did. Mick and the boys let me sleep until 5pm!!!!! I couldn't believe I slept so long - but it was soooo nice! :)

rip said...

Poor ducklings! I am impressed that you and your kids noticed them! I am always rushed driving down Argent.

p.s. Sidney did a great job on her talk in primary on Sunday. I sat next to her before she got up. She leaned over and set "I'm kind of nervous and excited!" She also told me about her school play and her part as the letter "I". It was so cute!

::DANDEE:: said...

Ummm...you have a blog! Welcome, welcome! My favorite part of this post is that you said you stopped because there was no one behind you. What would you have done if there were a few cars behind your sub. when the ducks were trying to cross?

Rachel said...

Amy, I love this post. I have been watching some new baby geese in the morning when I go running and they are so so so cute. But then I remember they get big and poop all over the running path and leave little messes on the bottom of my shoes. I hope your ducklings found their canal and made it safely home.

meohmyers said...

I remember the same exact thing happening to us on Argent last year while taking Ally to preschool! We had to pull over and watch the ducks cross the street. We were even honking at cars to slow down so they wouldn't hit the poor little ducks while they were walking across the street! I hope yours found the canal safely!