Living on the edge of the Ottawa River has its ups and downs, both literally and figuratively. As the seasons change, the river levels change from tossing and turbulent to tranquil, and finally frozen. In autumn especially, I recognize what a privilege it is to live where I do.
Everyday is a new canvas painted by Nature. And as an avid observer, it is a spectacular opportunity for me to view any number of birds throughout the year.
To encourage the birds, I have made a very conscious decision NOT to alter our shoreline, but to leave it as Nature intended- a bountiful buffet for birds, bugs, turtles, muskrats, otters, beavers, fish, clams AND children. Albeit, it looks a little odd, as both neighbours on either side of me find the grasses and reeds unsightly, and, being “neighbourly”, have each “trimmed” the reed bed 15 feet on either side for us using their ATV’s and hauling bed spring-rake contraptions behind them. The 15 feet is what the Ministry of the Environment allows property owners to cut, for clear access to the water. So we actually have 30 feet of clear access. Our neighbours have pure sand beach, no reeds, weeds, bugs, birds, butterflies, or children. In the interest of compromise and maintaining friendly relations, I have chosen for now to ignore this free reed cutting service. For now.
Throughout every season, I can look out my window, and my world view is just this. Full.
They are missing so much. And my little reed bed is a focal point that I get to enjoy every time I look at it.
There’s always one in every crowd. It’s what sets us apart, and makes life interesting for everyone. In this case it’s me, and my birdy, buggy buffet. I’m the lucky one.