Canadian Geese

I live near the Canada border.  The other day, a family of Canadian geese were in my yard.

Baby geese chasing Momma.

I have the good fortune of having a Momma bear and her cubs as my neighbors.

I call her Dolly.

Today, I saw a post trending on Facebook about Margaret Mead and the first sign of civilized humanity.  It was good:

“Years ago, anthropologist Margaret Mead was asked by a student what she considered to be the first sign of civilization in a culture. The student expected Mead to talk about fishhooks or clay pots or grinding stones.
But no. Mead said that the first sign of civilization in an ancient culture was a femur (thighbone) that had been broken and then healed. Mead explained that in the animal kingdom, if you break your leg, you die. You cannot run from danger, get to the river for a drink or hunt for food. You are meat for prowling beasts. No animal survives a broken leg long enough for the bone to heal.

A broken femur that has healed is evidence that someone has taken time to stay with the one who fell, has bound up the wound, has carried the person to safety and has tended the person through recovery. Helping someone else through difficulty is where civilization starts, Mead said.”

We are at our best when we serve others. Be civilized.”

Alot of animals do this too.  I’ve been sick with Covid and my 2 dogs refuse to leave my side. 

They slept by me all day. 

But geese, now Canadian geese, are special too. 

The V formation

Canadian geese fly south for the winter. It’s a long haul in a v formation in the sky.

1. They stick together.

2. The strongest takes the lead at first.

3. When the strongest gets tired, it falls back to the back of the group to regain strength protected from the winds by the others.

4. They rotate the front leaders and take turns with the youngest and weakest protected at the back.

5. If a goose gets hurt, shot, or falls out…2 geese volunteer to leave the group too to follow the goose down and stay with the goose until it gains strength again or passes on.

6. The geese honk alot to each other in v formation either for communication, comraderie, or encouragement.

Animals are more like humans than it seems sometimes.

Yesterday, I learned Rudyard Kipling wrote the Jungle Book while living in Vermont. Remember Mowgli? Maybe his book about the connection between man and nature had a lot to do with living here among these animals…the black bears and geese and deer here.

Anyway, I haven’t seen Dolly the bear and her baby cubs in a while. She showed up the day my son returned home from Guam. Coincidence? Maybe.

She does kinda remind me of Baloo living the bear necessities out here in Vermont. In the Jungle Book, the animals take Mowgli in and teach him how to survive and protect him. They remind me of Dolly, my Canadian geese family, and my own little “wolf pack,” my pups. We humans have a lot to learn from animals and nature too. This whole time living at this mountain cabin for a year, I thought I was letting the animals enter our domain, the fields and forests nearby, but no, it’s the other way around here. They have allowed me to be here and are beginning to trust me more. Just this morning, I saw 2 deer by my bird feeders so close to the house. I even set out a bowl of peanuts in shells for the ravens.

Something about living here in Vermont is changing me. I am becoming gentler, calmer, and healing.

And it has everything to do with the animals.


Author: J. Speer

I like to write. I have 5 books currently on Amazon, mostly fiction. I try to write positive and uplifting children's stories, expressive poetry for women, and interesting articles about personal growth, alternative medicine, and spirituality. My stories are often about diverse people but with human connection in mind through inner perspective. I love my characters especially the ones from my first book, Searching for Fire. I moved recently to Vermont. I live in the North Country region near Lake Willoughby, one of the most beautiful places I have ever seen. My heart will always be with Kansas but I love travel and meeting new people with diverse perspectives on life. I have found Vermonters to have many admirable qualities like stoicism and a love and stewardship of nature. My hobbies are writing, gardening, outdoor activities like kayaking, fishing, and hiking. I am an amateur herbalist. Many years ago, an alternative medicine doctor cured me of a respiratory illness by teaching me about vitamins and for that, I owe her a debt of gratitude. I recently bought a Jeep Wrangler that fits my personality and love for adventure. Associated with the military in my younger years, I have lived in Israel, Germany, and Virginia as well - all of which I loved in different ways. I thoroughly believe in the military spouse phrase, "bloom where you are planted" and endeavor to carry a positive optimism wherever I roam. Most days are good but admittedly I get down sometimes. I am prone to sadness or severe cynicism at times, so I turn to music as my consolation and source of expression or inspiration. My favorite songs currently are "How Deep is Your Love" by the Beegees, "La Vie en Rose", "A Million Dreams" or maybe Karen Carpenter singing "Close to You" or Elton John singing "Your Song." I also like "Nothing's Gonna Stop Us" by Starship or "I'll Stand by You" by The Pretenders. "Faithfully" by Journey always reminds me of rollerskating with friends in the 1980s. My favorite quotes are from the Velveteen Rabbit, Steve Jobs, and this one..."To the caterpillar it was the end of the world, but to the butterfly it was merely a beautiful beginning." Or there is the quote from Peter Pan teaching Wendy..."What if I fall? But, oh my darling, what if you fly?" I also believe in being a pearl - graceful on the outside but full of grit and gratitude on the inside. My favorite women of the Bible are Ruth, Hannah, and Hagar. Thanks for stopping by my blog. Cheers, friend.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: