Friday, January 17, 2014

Animal Stories

I have a few stories that I like to tell over and over again because the telling takes me back to that wonderful moment and I get to relive it.

The stories that give me the most joy are the ones where I have some significant interaction with an animal.  Meeting an animal and becoming fast friends... or whatever the animal equivalent is.  I've had a horse follow me around.  Met a dog in farmer's field off the road and went for a walk together.  I've had a couple herds of cows run up to their fences, just really curious about why I was walking by. A swallow fly along side me for several blocks.  A tapir trying to nose my face.  A pelican that clamped down on my arm. Looked after some pigs last summer and got to know their personalities very well. 

The most resent comes from this past summer.  I went out to my friend's family farm with a bunch of other friends.  We had a great time and one night we played sardines.  It is reverse hide-and-seek.  One person hides and everyone searches.  As each person finds the hidden person they hide with them.  Last one searching hides next.  Fun game but I was having a terrible time finding everyone in one round.  I knew it was down to just me and one other guy.  Then I spotted the farm cat.  I said hello and said I was looking for his master.  The cat meowed at me a few times and walked a straight line to where the rest of the group were hiding.  I just followed along. I definitely didn't have to hide first the next round.

But my favourite was my butterfly.  I had been working at a green house when I saw a butterfly caught up in an old spider web.  I got the notion in my head that this wasn't going to serve anything to have the dead bug just get caught up in it.  Also there wasn't much going on in the way of customers so I took my time.  I got a small bit of plant and used it to give the butterfly some purchase rather than whip around.  I used a bit of twig to free his wings from the webbing.  I never touched the butterfly itself, I was too worried that its wings might be as sensitive as a dragonfly.  I merely got the web caught on the twig and gently pulled it off the wing.  I got most of it off and I knew his feet weren't stuck because he hoped off the bit of plant and climbed onto my hand and set up shop on my finger.  I left him there to get over his trauma and went back to work.  A lot of customers were confused and thought it was a fake.  Eventually my manager just told me to go for lunch as my new little guy was distracting to everyone.  I sat and ate, I kept a sharp eye on his wings because he hadn't opened them yet and I was worried they might be stuck together.  But over the course of the lunch he tested his wings out and flapped them a bit.  He went back to sitting and I went back to my lunch.  I ended my break and headed back into work.  Again the customers were incredibly confused and couldn't seem to function with him sitting on my finger.  I eventually just had to shoo him away and really force him out the door to try flying again.  He took off and seemed to have no troubles.

What is your best animal/insect interaction story?

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