Ducks February 19, 2001
Monday February 19, 2001 21:50:18 PM

A day off work is always a good day- and today was one of those days. Today in the U.S.A, we celebrated the holiday known as President's Day.

Our marvelous democracy has had leaders of personalities and capabilities as varied as those who elected them.

I'm more concerned right now, however, about having been able to sleep in till 9:30 and watch NickJr with Isaiah this morning.

Isaiah gets to watch Blue's Clues, Dora the Explorer, and Li'l Bill every day, but it's a rare treat when I get to watch them with him. Of course, I have to admit, I am usually 1/3 - 1/2 watching those shows as I check my email and surf some news pages, but then Isaiah is also usually only 1/3 - 1/2 watching those shows as he runs crazy through the place playing and shouting.

Today was beautiful- sunny and just warm enough to be comfortable in a jacket. We felt that we should take advantage of the environmental optimality and decided to go to the local cemetary that has a nicely sized lake with geese and ducks which, in beautiful days past, has been the location of frequent walks for us.

Isaiah likes ducks. He likes geese too, even if he usually calls them ducks. I guess for a not-yet-two-year-old, missing the sort of subtle differences that differentiate ducks from geese doesn't require and excuse. After all, he can say "Appalachian" and count (with a little help) to 12.

Isaiah had heard us discussing these plans, and when we asked him what he wanted to do after lunch, he said "Do the ducks!" Which, of course, meant he wanted to go see the ducks. In our family language, "do" has become (for Isaiah, anyway) a sort of verbal shorthand for any obvious verb.

We also decided we would take Kroger along with us. She could wait in the van while we walked around the lake, and then after our walk, we were going to go by Ruth's aunt Ruth's house where Kroger could run in her back yard.

As we parked by the lake, Isaiah knew where he was and seeing the ducks and geese brought a tremendous smile to his little face as he giggled "The ducks!".

Ruth had brought a loaf of stale bread to feed the birds and when we had shut Kroger in the van and walked to the bank of the lake, she began pitching hunks of bread to the closest geese. Isaiah tried throwing some bread, but he hasn't yet mastered letting go of the object being thrown at the right time to maximize its travel. He was very successful, however, at dropping the bread at his feet.

He was delighted when some of the bolder geese came right up and ate bread crusts out of Ruth's hand.

Isaiah is a good little walker and kept up well. When we are in public I always have a hold of one of his hands, but I rarely have to slow down much to keep from pulling him along. Frequently he pulls me along- especially when we are walking through the mall and are approaching the coin-op car rides.

As we made our way around the lake, we created a continuous bow-wave of waterfowl reducing their proximity to us. One area of the lake was shaded and there was still a thin layer of unthawed ice crusting its surface. When we came upon the shaded area, a group of ducks got up off the grass and walked out onto the ice. All three of us laughed like crazy watching the ducks slip and slide on the ice. It was even funnier when they reached the thinnest part of the ice and it broke under their webbed feet and they plopped in the water.

Any holiday is a good one, but this was a great one.

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I'm still kicking myself for not getting s shot of the ducks on the ice...

Here's George Washington for President's Day

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