Today, I was driving down the main road of my subdivision. What distinguishes this thoroughfare as the “main road” is that the speed limit is a breakneck 25 miles per hour, as opposed to the more sedate 20 miles per hour in most of the development. I was driving along when I noticed that the car ahead of me was stopped in the middle of the road about 50 feet ahead of me. There was a person on the meridian next to the car.
Now, it is not unusual where I live for people to stop and chat with each other. It doesn’t usually happen when one of the residents is driving and must come to a complete stop to carry on the conversation, but the situation is not unheard of. I didn’t think much about it, other than to chuckle that people seem to find this practice completely normal.
What was distinctly abnormal was what happened next. The guy on the meridian began jumping around as if being attacked by murder hornets. He was running at and around the car. It was a disconcerting sight. The way he was bouncing around, I wondered if he needed help or if he was some sinister oldster zombie character trying to eat the brains of the person in the stopped car.
Then, I saw the reason for the bopping around. There was a small turtle in the road. Apparently, the car stopped to avoid hitting it. The guy on the meridian went to move the turtle from the road, but it started “running” to get away. Unfortunately, it was running in circles around the car. It was kind of funny to watch the man try to outrun a turtle. We are all old here. The guy eventually caught the turtle and carried him to safety on the other side of the road. Good job, sir! Pretty cool.
We are an animal-loving bunch here in my neighborhood. A couple of years ago, the alpha male alligator must have decided that one of the juveniles was getting too big for his britches and forced him out of his pond. The junior alligator, disoriented and confused, ended up in the park area at the front of the development. I think he was okay until he got to the path that leads from the “main road” to the clubhouse/mailbox area. I think the paved road flummoxed him. He began walking in circles. Some of my neighbors found him and set up a little parade of people to guide him to another pond across the street. There was a video on Facebook of our stalwart residents shepherding the alligator to smoother waters. I don’t think I would have wanted to get as close to him as my neighbors did, but no harm done. In another situation, someone put up yellow police tape around an oak tree that was housing a new owl family. They wanted to give the new momma and daddy owl some privacy with their babies.
It is nice to live in a place where people pay attention to this sort of thing. It warms my heart. Some people retire so they can stop and smell the roses. Some people retire so they can stop and help the turtles.
What unique characteristic do you like best about where you live? Please share your perspective by leaving a comment. In the alternative, you can leave me an email at www.terrilabonte.com.
Have a helpful day!
2 thoughts on “The Turtle Whisperer”
I live in rural NE Alberta and watching mule and whitetail deer gives me great pleasure. I’ve seen herds of 20-30 at a time. Some winters I see 3-4 buck deer nipping at the perennials poking through the snow right up by the house. Looking for new deer tracks in the snow on the hill behind the house is a winter morning ritual. Those deer aren’t so cute in the summer when I have to chase them from the garden where they love the new corn and pea shoots. I’ve chased a bear away from the yard a few times in the spring of the year. This past June we watched a sow bear with 2 cubs playing on the hill about a quarter mile away. Nothing better than nature tv.
I love watching the critters in our backyard. Having lived most of my life in overly developed areas, it is such a treat to sit at my kitchen table and watch nature through my sliding glass door! If we go a couple of days without seeing our animal neighbors, we truly miss them!
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