the attack of the ducks

Have you ever been scared of ducks? I mean, are ducks supposed to be scary? Geese, yes, but ducks?

I don’t know the answer to this. All I know is that I drove two hours to Bishop yesterday on a whim to explore a new area with C. (coffee shops! book stores!). It was warm and sunny and a good day for a long, quiet drive along the Eastern Sierras.


And once we got into town, after slurping on a green monster smoothy from the Black Sheep Espresso Bar and popping in a photography exhibit, I thought, “Hey, let’s go to the park and eat a chicken sandwich from Raymond’s Deli (the only one reviewed in Lonely Planet) and look at the mountains!”

And as I pulled into the parking lot, there was a brook about 20 feet from the curb and I said, “Look, C., ducks!” And he clucked. “No, not chickens, ducks!” And he clucked.

And we got out of the car, and I put C. down for a second to grab the sandwich and he was pointing at the ducks and walking blindly toward them, and he tripped over a cement block and turned and fell backwards and hit his head and and started wailing. And I picked him up with my right arm and had the sandwich in the other hand and I was walking toward the mini bridge to the playground when at least 50 ducks bee-lined for me. They were kicking fast in the water, waddling up the bank, onto the sidewalk, looking very intent and quacking like maniacs.

So I backed away, while holding my overtired, crying baby, feeling panicked that so many ducks were swarming me. I was sure they were going to nip at my ankles and turn all Zombie on me. I almost threw C. back in the car and locked the doors, but I realized, “I am 20 times the size of each of you strange creatures.” And so I backtracked through the parking lot — essentially crouching down behind the cars — as I made my way to a different bridge that would take me over the brook to the playground, where we ate our sandwich in peace.

All I can say is that it was INSANE. What ever happened to “Make Way for Ducklings”? Ducks are supposed to be sweet and relaxed. These ducks must be overfed by tourists and have an amazing sense of smell. When we go back to Bishop with A., I will not suggest a picnic at the park. Unless, of course, we decide to go feed the ducks.


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