Dear Stuart,

This morning I went for an early morning run at the track. I was not alone. Hundreds of Canada geese were gathered in the inner field of the track, poking around and occasionally waddling onto the track. I didn’t mind. Being a Canadian in the U.S. gets lonely and I enjoy being able to share my running space with my winged Canadian brethern.

I had brought my iPod with me but decided not to listen to it while I ran intervals. Mostly because I’m SO FAST that it gets all tangled up and then I am afraid it will choke me . I set it down on the side of the track and started my jaunt.

After a couple of laps, I noticed that the geese were falling into some sort of circular formation. There was a lead goose who seemed to be directing them. He was bigger than the others but looked like he had gotten into a fight with a muskrat or a jet engine. However, I imagine this gave him sky cred (see what I did there!) and that’s why he is lead goose. Anyway, I kept running but kept an eye on the pack as I expected them to start doing some sort of goose parade or interesting hunting thing.

I was exactly diagonal across the track to where I left my iPod when I noticed the goose brigade shuffling over toward it. Suddenly I understood. They were hunting my iPod. And giant-war-vet goose was leading it! I ran over to the geese (or rather, continued to jog at my hearty but not overly strenuous pace) but was too late. One of them had the iPod by the earbuds and the others were honking and hissing around it.

I’m not sure if you’ve ever gotten into a fight with a Canadian goose but let me tell you that it’s a rough battle. I was once attacked by a mother goose when I tried to pet its cute offspring. The welts it gave me have disappeared but the scars on my heart will last forever.

Just kidding. But really, geese are fierce. There’s a reason they are on the Canadian currency.*

I tried to grab the iPod but two geese beaked me from the left. Then one came at me from behind and before I knew it I was on the ground, surrounded by angry, blood-thirsty birds.

I was covering my face with one hand and trying to bat the geese away with the other when the elderly Asian woman who was doing tai-chi on the inside of the track came over and shooed the geese away.

To be honest, I forget what the point of this story was. It seemed like a good idea when I started writing but now I realize that it really has no relevance to anything. Nor does it have an interesting ending (I got my iPod back but the earbuds don’t work).

Oh well, I tried.

Best,
Heather

* I realized after the fact that the bird stamped on our $1 coin (the loonie) is not a goose, but a loon.

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