I did not envision sewage drains. That is, until today.
Yesterday while Drew and Bethie were out front shooting hoops, the ball rolled toward a street drain. Drew chased after it, but was brought to a halt when he heard chirps coming from under the street. He peered into the grate, and there floating among the flotsam, were three little ducklings. Bethie was instantly at his side, her plans for the future quickly escalating. By the time Jamie and I were able to get to them, it had grown dark and the ducklings had waddled forlornly back into the drain pipe. We decided to leave them for the night and attempt a rescue first thing in the morning.
Never have I see the girls jump out of bed as easily as they did this morning. Throwing a sweatshirt on over her pajamas, Little Miss grabbed a bucket and towel while Bethie took hold of our makeshift net. They ran toward the drain, but grew suddenly alarmed to see that a cat was peering eagerly through the slats. They shooed, dropped to their knees, and breathed a sigh of relief to see that all three had made it through the night.
Jamie had already left for work, so it was up to me to lift the grate. (Those puppies are heavy.) The ruckus frightened the poor things, and they slipped right back into the pipe. We waited quietly, eagerly, and finally they emerged. Bethie scooped them up one by one, handing them off to Little Miss who was ready with a warm towel and bright eyes.
Because there were no parental mallards in sight, we made a simple little home for them, Drew googling "how to care for wild ducklings," and the others fetching supplies. Certain supplies, such as duck food, were a bit more difficult to fetch. But there just happens to be a feed store about a mile from our home, so I gave them a jingle to find out what we should do. He recommended the chick starter and we made our way to the Thrifty Feed.
By "made our way," I mean that Bethie and I walked. It was a delightful morning, and we didn't mind one bit that Jamie had the car for the day. After arriving at the store, we found our food and started to check out, but were informed that I could only use my card on a purchase of $5.00 or more. We had spied some tomato plants on our way in, so we added a couple to our total and went on our way. And thus it was that Bethie and I strolled down 40th with two tomato plants, four pounds of duck food and silly, spring-drunk grins on our faces.
Our day has been spent delighting in wee chirps and the feel of soft downy feathers. (The chirps subsided substantially once they'd been fed, poor little things.)
Of course they were named almost instantly, and not much (formal) education took place today.
But we are learning. Yes, we are learning that God hears us, that He delights in us, that His creation is glorious, and that caring for three little ducklings is a mighty fine way to celebrate spring.