Monday, March 5, 2012
Why Walk When You Can Fly
Duck season continues in this part of the world. And no, we don’t have THAT kind of duck season, nor do we have ‘wabbit’ season – leave that for Elmer Fudd.
As duck season is typically year round in these mild-weathered parts with the majority of the little waddlers rarely flying south, feeding the ducks, stepping around their waddling bodies, and hearing them quack overhead as they fly to the nearest pond is constant.
As I waddle my way down the path leading to the pond, I see dozens of the mallards waddling, or running as best as they can, up ahead on the path as if they too are out for a stroll. As I approach, the little duck-billed darlings waddle/run out of my way, so tame they are to fly off in a panic. Even the odd crow hoping to find something shiny hops out of my way. Their goofy-looking waddle/run/hops have me itching to yell at them (which I wouldn’t as they would think I was nuts), “Why walk when you can fly? Make the most of what you have – you’ve got wings, use ‘em!”
They have wings able to take them places farther than my own legs can carry me. Maybe it’s just easier to waddle than to fly. With all that flying to and fro, I am sure their little wing muscles must be pooped.
But when the food comes free - the breadcrumbs, sunflower seeds and millet literally thrown at their webbed feet - other than skid-landing onto a frozen pond, it’s much easier to walk than fly.
They serve as a reminder – why always walk when you can fly? Yes, sometimes you have to walk and push your way in to get to the good stuff (even if it’s breadcrumbs), but everyone has the ability to fly, so why not strive for something more? No need to poke around, letting others – or yourself, for that matter – slow you down. Why not push yourself to go further – faster - and outdo what you think you are capable of? Why wouldn’t you make the most of what you have, and do the best, if not better, than what you can typically do?
Walking might be the easiest and less strenuous way to get to what, or where, you want. But when you have flown and reached your destination, look back and see how far you have come – and be proud. Be proud of what you did by pushing yourself and taking flight, and not always taking the easy route. Be proud of achieving your goal, even if it’s birdseed - which I don’t recommend eating. Surprise yourself at where your wings will take you. By pushing yourself to do better, go farther, who knows where you will end up, and what you will see along the way.
On another day and at another park, another brace* of ducks pecked away at the snacks provided, and I realized something else. Maybe a balance of walking and flying during a journey of accomplishment is what is needed to make the most of what we have, and of what we strive to do. Sometimes I am always in a rush, and I do try to challenge myself by pushing my limits to get to where I want to go. But as a shimmering peacock made his way proudly through the ducks and seagulls, I knew: you never know who, or what, you will meet along the way if you don’t take the time to sometimes walk.
I think those ducks are on to something.
As cliché as it is - and heck, those clichés are made for a reason - spread your wings and fly. But take time to occasionally waddle.
And stay away from Elmer Fudd.
*(a group of ducks on the ground)