The lazy days of summer on Tulin Pond grow more interesting as the days shorten. Mama Duck Ariel saw her teenagers off a few weeks ago. Since then Ariel has been left to her own devices with no one to keep her company or entertain her. When Mama Belle brought her brood of babies to Tulin Pond for training sessions, Ariel thought to join and share her wisdom. As the little ducks paddled around the pond, plopping and plunking in the water, Ariel watched and Belle circled. Time to join- Ariel entered the pond only to be met with a loud series of commands from Belle, marshaling her troops and sending them immediately to her side. Our Ariel is not one to give up. She hung in the pond, keeping her distance as a quiet persistent presence. Belle did not relax her vigilance.
As the afternoon passed, Belle decided her babies were old enough for a parade to the tree. Following Mama Belle, the entire family marched out to the plum tree for a feast of fallen bird seed and the bugs. Everyone was having a great time until ...again...Ariel tried to join in the fun. Belle circled her family, keeping her face toward the intruder. When it was clear Ariel was in no mood for flying, Belle marched right up to stand in her face and started telling Areil which way was up in NO uncertain terms. ( I think she might have called her a female jerk!)
For the time being Ariel was chastened and sent on her way... but she'll be back. In her absence the neighbor cat takes up the watch from the ponds edge or from under the little fir tree. He thinks he is hidden, but Belle spots him immediately and gives her orders loud and clear, "Everyone into the pond! Stay in the middle and stay together. Do as I say and do it now!"
Will it ever be time for school to start again. Keeping these children safe and teaching them life skills is just too much trouble.