I am not a huge animal lover.
Don’t get me wrong, I don’t mind eating them every now and then, but as an adult I have never owned, nor desired to own a pet. The thought of feeding, cleaning and caring for a living creature that was not part of me at one time is mildly repulsive. I’m sure the pet lovers out there would argue that I miss out on the joy that pets can bring, but I feel like my life has other sources of joy that are less hairy and slobbery. More than anything, having a pet just sounds tiring. I already two very tiring things in my life named Big E and little g.
However, sometimes I wonder if my anti pet stance hinders my children. Between age two and three, Big E was terrified of any size of dog, and even now tries to hide behind me when big dogs are around. I imagine having pets is a great way to teach responsibility and gentleness to other living things.
In addition to those things, I may be denying little g of one of her little life’s joys. Every dog, cat or fuzzy creature we spot elicits a smile from little g’s face. At any time of day you can find her clutching tightly to her favorite stuffed animals, toddling around the room as happy as can be.
Luckily, I have found the best of both worlds. Our neighborhood is home to a flock of wild turkeys. No, flock is too gentle a word. Perhaps horde or infestation might be more appropriate. There are literally hundreds of the feathered creatures meandering around the houses and roadways. In the spring, tiny turkeys with irresistible fuzzy feathers toddle along behind their adults, bringing a smile even to my cynical face.
In this video Big E, little g and I went to find the funny creatures.
Big E is saying, “Whoa! Some of them are super close!”
It wasn’t too hard, their tracks run from my yard to my neighbors in a non stop line, not to mention their whistling and gobbling often fill the air. As a result of this field trip little g can now make turkey calls in her 16 month old way. As E and I yell, “Gobble, gobble!” Little g yells, “GA GA! GA GA!” What’s even cuter? Now every time she sees any bird she yells at the top of her lungs “GA GA!” The poor robins and blue jays just cock their heads and stare. They obviously don’t speak turkey.
Living in the mountains allows us the proximity of these wild turkeys. I consider them the neighborhood pets. They find food and shelter for themselves, but allow all of us to observe them, and their babies, in exchange for raiding the occasional bird feeder. Their wildness attracts me. I like to have them around.