Personally, I haven’t seen such extended joy in my immediate surroundings since the goats were babies. I’ve been a duck dad for less than a week and already at least 50 people have been blessed by them. When I ‘m not taking them places for older ladies and their families and friends to delight in, people are “flocking” here to see them in droves.
Okay, my grand niece Jamie’s birthday also occurred this weekend, so I can’t give the ducks total credit for the home visits, but Jamie’s gang of glorious relatives and friends certainly had a whee of a time seeing and holding the ducks, and feeding and petting the goats and chickens.
And today, Joyce Elder and Linda (don’t know her last name) are stopping by after lunch to see the ducklings and Hunter, my mostly-black cat. I adopted Hunter from Linda because he was being chased by coyotes where they lived and she didn’t want him harmed. That was two years ago now–and both Hunter and I benefited: he is one of the best cats I’ve ever had.
This morning Hunter had his “hellion” on, though. Every so often he goes into full kitten mode, darting around the house and mock-attacking me as if he’s been rolling in catnip. (Unless it’s growing wild outside right now, he hasn’t been.)
The problem is, his mock attacks include teeth and claws–and he weighs at least 16 pounds; he’s a big boy (not fat at all; just big, like a pocket panther). Although he doesn’t fully employ his teeth and claws in mock attacks, I still have to take care not to encourage him to greater effort, or he might! He’s just playing. But it can hurt!
But back to the ducks.
They have been in and out of the kiddie pool so much the past few days that I haven’t had to employ my bathtub at all. The weather has cooperated, although I do add warm water to the pool (in combo with cold from the hose) to make sure it’s the right temperature that they want to dive and cavort. (If it’s hose-only cold, they don’t dive as much.)
Jamie and her friends put towels on their laps for the ducks (in case of duck droppings). The ducks liked that a lot and settled right in, as if they were in a nest. But when they decided they’d had enough lovin’, the girls would extend the ends of the towels over the kiddie pool and the ducks would “make like penguins” and dive in from about a foot and a half up. You’ve seen how penguins dive, right? Most of them go in head first…
I may take them back to Steilacoom tomorrow so Laura and her wife can see them, too. They missed out when I took them on Saturday to share with Laura’s mom and friends. Lisa sent Laura photos of them and Laura fired back, “Our new pets?” Lisa responded, “No, just visitors!”
I think Jackie has forgiven me for getting them. It didn’t take long. I promised I’d pay for all their needs.
I do need to get a larger kiddie pool for when they’re fully grown, though. This four foot one is perfect for now, but it won’t be when they’re adults. And when I get pets, they get not just what they need, but what they want. And ducks simply cannot be ducks without sufficient pools to “duck” in. They revel in it.
When I get ready to take them out, I ask, “Want to go swimming?” and then I offer the little blue pan that they swam in at first. They jump right in and start cheeping like mad. Translation: “Heck, yes! Let’s go! Hurry!!!”
I’m in love.