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Saturday, November 30, 2013

Gilded In Sunlight

Trent and I had to go to the supermarket yesterday to pick up a few things. It was far more pleasant being in the fairly quiet grocery store than to even think of going to any department store or shopping center on the day after Thanksgiving. Actually, we had gone to our supermarket on Thanksgiving Day, but before you begin crying foul, let me explain. We have a wonderful group of people working in our supermarket. It seems as though whichever department of the store we go into, there is the friendly, familiar face of a staff member there. We seem to have a series of chats as we go through the store every time we stop in to get a few things.

When we stopped in before Thanksgiving to get a few last-minute things, we saw one of our favorite head clerk/managers, Tony. Tony is a really great young man who has always been genuinely friendly and kind with us. When Trent recently had hand surgery, Tony knew what would be happening with him, since his father had gone through the same surgery. Every time we've come to the store since then, he always takes the time to check on Trent's condition and progress. So, when Trent talked to him and found out that Tony had to work on Thanksgiving, we both felt really bad for him. Trent told him that I could bake him some cookie bars, and that we'd bring them in for him on Thanksgiving. I was totally cool with it, because it's hard working on holidays.

So on Wednesday evening, I whipped up a batch of chocolate chip and Andes Mint cookie bars. It felt really good to go to the store and not be adding to the staff's work load. Naturally, Tony was on break when we got there. I was rather surprised that the other two head clerks on duty both went out of their way to contact him so that we could meet him near the break room. Tony was visibly touched and pleased, and let us know that he was going to share the cookies with his coworkers, and hugged us repeatedly. After he went back to finish his break, we were pleased to learn that he had told the other managers that he might be getting some cookies that day. The managers were all on the lookout for cookie delivery, just in case.

After our post-Thanksgiving grocery run, we decided to go to our local Sonic to get a nice cold drink, and that's when we were the recipients of a most breathtakingly beautiful gift. We were headed toward the West and the sun was getting lower in the sky, making it a bit of a challenge to see. Suddenly, Trent said, "Oh, my gosh, look!" Flying toward us was the largest flock of Canada geese that we had ever seen migrating together. There must have been over a hundred. It was almost like seeing one of those huge clouds of small birds swooping around swarming insects. But these larger fowl were flying with a purpose. And because the sun was behind them, their sides, heads, and wings looked like they had been dipped in sunlight. No fleet of aircraft has ever been lit as effectively or beautifully as these magnificent creatures. They were positively glowing. I literally gasped at the beauty.

When we finished getting our drinks and started heading East, the last of the gigantic flock was coming in for a landing. As we drove past where they landed, a sizeable patch of grazing land for a former dairy, we saw that thousands of geese had landed to eat and rest before the next leg of their journey. We felt fortunate to have been able to turn our eyes to the sky at such an opportune moment and see such stunning natural beauty. And then to see such a massive collection of these beautiful Canada geese gliding down to a field for some rest on their journey. Then I remembered that when we had the television on earlier that day, we noticed that several Alfred Hitchcock movies were being broadcast that day. The geese must have heard that The Birds was on tv. Time to go home before they got any ideas!