A few weeks ago, when my sister was in town, I had an incident involving a Mallard duck. I was driving along just a block away from my house when a male duck decided to plunk himself down in the middle of the road. There was road construction making it impossible to drive around him. I carefully inched forward until I was about two feet away, gunned my accelerator and honked my horn. The dumb quacker refused to leave. Finally, I rolled down my window and shouted a few obscenities. Not my finest moment but, hey, my sister and I had lunch reservations and I was not going to be late due to a duck. Finally, he glared at me and waddled to the edge of the road to let me pass.
When I got home to pick up my sister I told her about the duck. She was like, “Um. Sure. Whatever you say.” We have a long history of her thinking that I exaggerate.
Well, we piled in my car and headed for the restaurant. We were about a quarter mile away when a duck flies at my car like a bombadeer and narrowly misses my windshield! I kid you not. My sister looked at me and said, “Woe. What have you done to piss off ducks?”
I admit me and mother nature have had a long running feud. Don’t even get me started on the spider incident that caused me surgery and a five-inch permanent scar on my right elbow. However, I have never had any kind of altercation with ducks. Until now. And our neighborhood isn’t exactly a haven for these feathered freaks. We have no large ponds or duck breeding grounds nearby. We’re near the ocean for Pete’s sake and I don’t think Mallards nest near salt water.
Anyway, since it happened a few weeks ago, I’d forgotten about the whole duck thing. Until this morning. I’m sitting in my family room enjoying a cup of coffee when my eleven year old son says, “Hey mom, there’s a duck in our back yard.” My blood ran cold.
I got up slowly and walked to our patio doors. Sure enough, there's a Mallard sitting on my back lawn glaring at me. He had this whole, make-one-false-move-and-you’re-quackers look in his eye. I swear. Bravely, I grabbed my camera and slid the patio doors open (a whole five inches) and snapped this picture. I apologize for the poor quality. In my defense I was terrified he’d attack so my hands were shaking.
Next, I catch movement out of the corner of my eye and I see this! Yup, a female mallard at the other end of my yard. I think, Oh my God they’re multiplying! I quickly slammed the door shut and locked it.
On the drive to school one of my smart ass kids pointed out the whole thing might have something to do with the fact that the Anaheim Mighty Ducks stomped all over our Canuk hockey team last night. My kids tend to have vivid imaginations.
So tell me, are you one of those people who make friends with wildlife like Snow White? Do the woodland creatures consider you their friend? Or are you like me, resigned to live your life in fear mother nature will extract revenge?