Tuesday, September 9, 2008


One of the things we like about our new place is the absence of traffic jams. You don't have to adjust your clock for fear of missing your appointment due to heavy traffic. Having come from a country where “bumper-to-bumper” traffic is an ordinary part of life, this is such a relief to me.

Last Saturday morning however was a different story. As hubby and myself routinely negotiated the pathway of our jogging trail, we were surprised to find a long pile of cars stucked in the middle of the road with barely a hint of movement. Oddly, the traffic lights from a distance were working well but none of the cars were progressing. So we hurried off to find out what it was all about.

Right there, in the middle of the intersection, we saw more than a hundred wild ducks parading on the street, oblivious to the traffic jam they were causing. They were honking in unison, as if bragging about their power to render that corner of the road into a standstill. And much to the chagrin of the helpless drivers, they took their own sweet time, leisurely navigating the street, like they held the world at the palm of their feet. And how they did indeed! (Incidentally, Canada is a country known for caring for animals and respect for nature).

What happened next was even more fascinating. A small goose started to lag behind, with a distance of about 20 meters from the rest of the herd. As the traffic started to move already, the helpless goose couldn’t find a way to cross through. Realizing this, about a dozen drove at the other side of the road nestled to the ground and patiently waited for the single member that was still at the other side of the road. They left only when the wayward duck was in their fold. One goose is equally important as a hundred geese.

From the internet, I have read other fascinating facts about the goose – like how they usually fly in v-shape formation because the formation tends to add greater uplift for those flying behind, or how a leader naturally emerges, in rotating fashion, from the pack. If only for these, the geese have earned my respect and admiration, never mind the minor inconvenience they can cause us urban dwellers. Their minds may be primitive compared to humans, but they certainly provide us lessons about caring and relationships which, unfortunately for some of us, may take a lifetime to learn.


Droomvla said...

One time, Frank and I were traveling in Scotland and we had a similar experience...except taht in our case, it was a flock of sheep. hahahahaha

An KLM baga, swans an gin gagamit sa advertisement ninda. Kay kun nalayog talaga an mga swans, naka v-formation. I see them here all the time, lalo na kun ma-change sin season. Ina baga na kun nagma-migrate sinda to the south.

Mel said...

amo, makatatawa talaga but i had to resist the urge to laugh kay maalo man baga sa mga drivers who all looked very dismayed. if i can remember it correctly, it took 10 minutes for the traffic to start moving again. for people (like canadians) not used to heavy traffic, that waiting period is just too much.