There’s nothing more relaxing than a day at the beach with your family, unless, of course, your daughters start feeding the birds. All it takes is tossing one piece of bread on the sand to turn your seaside picnic into a scene from an Alfred Hitchcock movie.
For my money seagulls are the telemarketers of the animal kingdom: persistent, annoying and constantly interrupting your meals. To my daughters, however, they’re magical, as enchanting as the birds who helped the mice sew Cinderella’s dress for the ball. They adore them.
So on this past spring break, before I even knew what happened, half our picnic had gone to the birds. My girls weren’t satisfied with just throwing food at a distance, they wanted to get as close to them as possible.
They spoke gently to the gulls, and using their bread as bait, lured them to within petting distance. Then they tossed the bread in the air and watched the gulls pluck it out of the sky just a few inches from their hands. The birds were loving it.
The whole thing looked like so much fun a little boy walked up and joined in on the act. He was probably four or five, and he copied my daughters’ technique to get to the birds to fly in as close as possible.
Except instead of bread, he had a stick.