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home : columnists : columnists August 23, 2017

8/20/2014 8:49:00 PM
Along the Way...

Wisdom learned when doing messy farm chores... (well, you gotta think about something so I tend to philosophize a bit.)

"Dive bombing" birds - chattering and swirling around me as I headed through the horse shed finally got my attention. "Get out of my face!" Then my lightning-swift mind told me... something is amiss here!

Are the baby swallows leaving their nest?

You stand still and look around. They must have. But there is one tiny baby on the ground... well... actually on a pile of horse dung!

And as I stood quietly watching, I hoped he would be OK. With horses milling around inside the shed, he didn't pick the safest place to land.

And as I contemplated his situation, these thoughts came to mind - that reflect not only on the bird - but on how many times the rest of us might be in a similar situation. And wondering if we should do anything about it.

Philosophical Contemplation Number One: Advice for baby bird (and me): So you left the nest... and you landed on a pile of "sh#t". Suggestion: just try to fly... or hop... to get away and at least you might get to a safer pile! And maybe find a better world!

The next time I came out I saw him sitting on a pile next to the wall - well, safer anyway!

Chore time came again and now I knew enough to look for any errant birdling on the ground. Didn't see any.

But as I headed out the next gate, swallows started "dive bombing" me again! So I immediately stood still... and looked down at the ground. A few inches from my boot was a baby bird sitting on another knob of horse dung. I had just missed stepping on him.

Philosophical Contemplation Number Two: Guess this reminds me that if we look closer at what looks like "crap," we might see a little "blob" of beauty... like a tiny feathered baby bird.

And as I looked even closer at the tiny birdling... I could see that he must not have moved for quite a while because behind him he had a pile of "droppings" of his own!

This led to Philosophical Contemplation Number Three: That if we find ourselves in a crummy situation or in someone else's dung pile... and we don't move away from it... we just add to it by ourselves!

But there is hope... the next time I went out to do chores the little baby bird was no longer there.

I wonder if he learned as much as I did!

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