A few weeks ago, I found myself sitting on the side of a main road in Kihei, HI, stationed with a large brush chipper in need of a truck to haul it back to the base yard. It was parked in the high sun of the day. I had walked across the street to one of only a few trees that provided shade.
As I sat under the tree, I watched the cars pass by left and right. I was grateful for the small tree and the shade it gifted me. In my absence and wait, I did not notice a small bird sitting in the sun, nor did I see the sibling still in its oval home. A walker on the sidewalk behind me called out and said, “Oh look a small bird.” I stood up and looked down. The sun beating down on the small creature and the egg beside it, in the grass.
“It’s too bad. Such is life.”, the walker said and moved on.
I do not believe such is life, and proceeded to scan for the nest from whence the bird was from. I looked up into the tree, the one that shaded me. Hidden up on a small branch, a small nest, rested. I climbed up and saw another egg, and I knew this was the one.
I climbed back down and picked up the helpless duo and took them out of the sun. The bird was fine, happy and wondering of what I was going to do, no fear, but just looked at me. The egg less interested, quiet and still.
As I held the two in my hand, the bird stirred and was comforted by my cradle. As I looked at the tree and the branches afforded me, my ability to climb with one hand would be an issue. Of course I tried, but my one step would not reach the nest. I would need two, maybe three.
And then from across the street, my co-worker and friend pulled up in a big white truck, the one needed to haul the chipper away. He opened the door and jumped down, looking at me.
Smiling as he does, he looked at me to come back across the street. I did not. I waved to him, to come and see. He stepped away from the truck, curious and crossed the street. Still smiling, inquisitive and happy. I love this about him.
We exchanged a few words, as he saw what I had in my hand. He looked up at the nest and saw my quandary and need of a third arm and hand and without thought or hesitation, skillfully climbed into the tree. I lifted my hand up to him.
“The nest is small and weak.”, he said.
Our willingness to try would not be deterred by the building skills of the bird’s parents. He did not have gloves and felt to touch them would be an issue. He asked for one of mine and reached down and took it off my free hand. When ready, he used his bare hand on the branch and the other to reach toward my gloved hand. I gently rolled the bird and the egg into his.
He pulled up, and adjusted the small nest and carefully set the bird and the egg into the comfort of their home. The other egg, no doubt surprised to feel its companions back.
He descended from the small tree. We smiled to each other, walked across the street, picked up the equipment and drove away.
So yes, I thought … “Such is life.”, indeed.
This is a repost of story I wrote several months ago. I did not have a picture of my climbing partner and wanted to add it. Not only is he a talented Arborist, but a graffiti artist as well. Check him on out Instagram.