lessons learned: why did the ducks cross the road?

At school this morning, the car rider line was held up by 3 ducks who carefully made their way across the road from pond to parking lot.  Sleepy teenagers didn’t seem to care, but it reminded me of this post I wrote a couple of years ago.  Happy adventures! ~cameron

Don’t be afraid to expand yourself, to step out of your comfort zone.  That’s where the joy and the adventure lie. 

~Herbie Hancock

On the way to and from my daughter’s school, we pass a rustic homestead with room set aside for a large garden, an old wooden barn out back, and a decent sized duck pond in the front.  The pond has attracted various water fowl, but three have chosen to stay.  A mallard, a wood duck and an old white goose happily took up residence several years ago and never left.road_sign_duck_animal

This morning, as I was driving home, I witnessed an odd site.  The ducks and goose had crossed the road.  There they were, the goose leading the charge, up a hill to a newly developed residential neighborhood quite the antithesis of their pastoral field and farm.

The goose looked pretty sure of himself, and the ducks waddled along behind probably thinking, “Ok, what’s this goose gotten us into THIS time?!”  It appeared to be less of a morning stroll and more of a deliberate mission.

As I drove past, I began thinking about those ducks crossing the road.  In order to do so, something had to motivate them to leave their comfortable way of life at the pond and compel them to want to cross a busy 2 lane stretch during school hours.  Once across, they had to have noticed that the neighborhood sits atop a large hill–quite a climb for those little legs.  And yet, they were marching right behind that goose, right up the hill on a new adventure.

Stepping outside of our comfort zones can be a bit like those ducks crossing the road.  We have to leave the security of what we know to take on the possibility of the unknown.  We may encounter challenges along the way, like busy roads and steep hills, but in the end, we may find new opportunities and learn a bit more about our capabilities.

I am sure that when they finish their outing, the ducks and goose will return to the serenity of their pond.  But you know, I bet they’ll have some pretty good stories to tell when the Canadian geese drop in on their way home from winter vacation.

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