Thursday, March 26, 2009


Once a pretty lady mallard---not one of our own, unless her homing device was REALLY accurate---invaded our house for a Spa Day. One day when the work crew had been installing some kind of insulation in the ceiling at the office, I got home feeling itchy and scratchy and rashy all over, and couldn’t WAIT for a nice soak in my big tub. As I went in the door, I saw the dog and the cat, side by side on the floor, just exhausted and panting. I couldn’t figure WHAT was wrong with the poor things, until I saw the equally-tired duck sitting over by the fireplace, all nested down and resting.

She had apparently come down the chimney and provided jump-and-chase amusement for those two for quite some time. I gently picked her up and took her outside, where she slowly waddled over to the field and took off. I went back in, tearing off my itchy clothes, ran into my bathroom and reached for the faucet-handle.

My lovely tub was smeared with duck poop in several places, and right in the middle of the tub, my coveted bottle of REAL Shalimar perfume---the pretty bottle with the elegant glass fan for a stopper---was on its side in several pieces, with that glorious scent filling the room.

I said several particularly nice words, gathered up the glass, scrubbed the tub--I’d have bathed in the perfume, but the glass and poop ruled that out---and as I knelt there in my bra and underpants, flinging the Comet---hot, sweaty, swearing under my breath and wanting my bath, something in my wastebasket caught my eye. I had had a Tab as I dressed for work that morning, and had stuck the can upside down into the wastebasket. And nestled in the hollow aluminum bottom was a little round pinkish egg.

I cannot imagine how that lady duck managed to elude cat and dog long enough to leave me that little tribute, nor how she managed to perch her hiney up there just right to lay that egg. And I don’t think the kids would have believed me if not for that odd little egg, pink and round and with a glow like porcelain.

I blew it out and washed it and kept it for years.


Tonja said...

What a great story! I can just imagine your surprise to find the egg. Amazing! And I bet you smelled that perfume for a long time!

Ondine said...

Oh, what a lovely memory of a strange and quirky day!

..I thought mallards laid green eggs?

racheld said...

They have iridescent green heads, which glint in the sunshine---at least the drakes do. The little hens are all-over-brown, but with many shadings and markings and beauty spots.

The only fowl I've seen that lays sorta green eggs are Araucanas---pretty chickens with poufy earmuffs. Their eggs are many shades of pastel blues, and I guess some of them might veer off into green hues.

But I wish they DID lay green eggs. Dr. Seuss would be pleased.