Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Snack Us, Snack Eagle

My wife and I journeyed to northern Michigan this past week where we spent a few days at my parents' cottage on the shores of Hubbard Lake. Usually, we try to get there at least a couple times each year. This was our first visit for 2011.

We left on Saturday as I wanted to make an appearance at a wedding reception celebrating the marriage of a second cousin. I hadn't seen that side of the family in a while, so I thought visiting with them and later with the fauna of upper Michigan would be like killing two birds with one stone.

Speaking of birds . . . wait, I'm getting ahead of myself. Back up to where Wendy and I just hit the road near Ann Arbor. Wanted to grab a light snack as we'd missed lunch and dinner at the reception would be late. Key word: light.

So we pulled up to the drive-through at McDonalds, agreeing to split a two-cheeseburger and small fry combo. Ordered at the speaker, pulled ahead and paid at the pay window, pulled ahead to the delivery window and waited.

And waited, and waited.

What?? Doesn't anybody order cheeseburgers anymore? Cars were piling up behind us. I felt bad. They gave us our drinks, fine. Just two cheeseburgers and a small fry and we'll be on our way. We certainly don't get this kind of service at our local Tim Horton's where we hardly have to slow the car down before they're tossing hot coffees and whatever else at us. Our favorite place there, the local Tim Horton's.

Anyway FINALLY they hand me a big bag with an apology. Hmmm, this is an awfully heavy bag for just two cheeseburgers and a small fry. But we've already waited too long and need to hit the road.

Here's what we got when we opened our bag back on the highway. Instead of two cheeseburgers, we got one quarter-pounder with cheese and a double cheeseburger without mustard, noted special order on our receipt and probably the reason for the long wait. Instead of one small fry, we got one large order and one small order of fries. I would have liked to have seen the look on the person who was expecting all that but instead got two cheeseburgers.

Felt bad about that, but we didn't have time to turn around, go back, sort it all out and wait again.

Okay, now the bird story. Up at Hubbard Lake I took a kayak along the shore to Sucker Creek where occasionally hangs out a majestic bald eagle. As I neared the swampy area that lies just past Driftwood Shores subdivision, I could see commotion on a dead stump way off in the distance.

When it moved a particular way, I saw a flash of white. The eagle! He was obviously busy eating something there. I carefully paddled closer, hoping to get as close as I could without being seen. I knew that when I couldn't see his white head, he was busy eating. So I paddled only when his head was turned.

But as I got closer, I saw more and more white. His head was erect and obviously surveying his surroundings. I sat as still as possible, only the current carrying me closer to him. Isn't his vision based on movement? Maybe if I was very careful, I could drift right up next to him on his deadwood perch.

Fat chance. I learned that "eagle eyes" isn't just an expression. Before I was within a hundred yards, he had gathered my intentions and flew off. In his claws, his own version of take-out, a big fish.

Wonder how long he had to wait to get that.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

....and then you tipped over again, but this time someone recorded it on their iphone and you are an internet sensation? Please tell me this is true.

5:00 AM  
Blogger Big Dave T said...

ANONYMOUS--No, didn't tip over. Since I got that leech on me last year, my feet don't touch bottom in the water and I'm very careful not to tip.

9:12 AM  
Blogger Carine said...

ew, leeches. I always laugh when I hear the "eagle eye" expression Dave. I had an English teacher back in middle school who would tell the class-"don't think I don't know what's going on here people, I am one person who's more than an eagle eye!'

the funny part-her glasses were the proverbial 1" thick!

11:23 AM  
Blogger Nankin said...

LOL, I bet the guy behind you in line got the two cheeseburgers. God forbid that their computers had gone down. No telling what you'd have gotten and don't ask these kids to figure change on their own brain power.

11:56 AM  
Blogger Lynilu said...

I have to ask .... you ordered a moderate meal for the two of you, and you got a ton of food. So how much of it did you actually eat? ;D

4:57 PM  
Blogger Big Dave T said...

CARINE--Ewwww, leeches is right. I'd gone 56 years without getting one on me till last year. Hopefully I can go another 56 years before getting another one.

I used to have one of those teachers who apparently had the type of glasses to see what was going on behind her. She knew exactly who was acting up, even as she wrote on the blackboard.

NANKIN--There was a fellow standing in the parking lot, looking rather annoyed and expectant. I'm wondering if it could have been him. I'm glad I wasn't around to witness the aftermath.

LYNILU--Put it this way, I'm taking extra rides on my bike this week and thinking of joining the gym.

6:45 PM  
Blogger TechnoBabe said...

McDonalds has the reputation for super uber fast service. Isn't that unusual to have such slow service and on top of that to get someone else's order? Like you, I would feel bad for the other people who ordered the larger order. We learned to take a couple seconds to check our order before we drive off. We were the people with the other order too often!
And when you were handed the larger order, how could you not eat it all?
Too tempting. Ha.

Aren't eagles wondrous birds? I have always been fascinated by them. You know for a fact that the eagle did not wait at all for his order. It was snatch and eat for him.

4:04 AM  
Blogger Big Dave T said...

TECHNOBABE--McDonalds around here is not that fast, and not as dependable. It's a good idea to take a quick check of the bag before you drive off.

There was a mother duck with babies floating right by that eagle. We've heard about eagles carrying off ducks. That mother was taking a chance.

3:51 AM  
Blogger Merle said...

Dear Dave ~~ Our McDonalds here are pretty fast and we have never got the wrong order, not that we go much. At least you got the better of the deal and you can't waste food --right?
You got a good look at the Eagle and his fish.
Glad you have air conditioning at home, work and in the car. Sorry to hear of the passing of your grandmother, but 99 years is a darn good run. I hope your trip was good and it is nice to meet up with relatives at weddings and funerals. Glad you and your wife
enjoyed the jokes. Take care, Regards, Merle.

1:34 AM  

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