Lucy and Mom doing yard work.


Lucy is a Canada goose who has become a big part of our lives and with those of everyone that comes to visit.  She has a lot of personality and knows what she wants and how she likes to live her life.

Lucy arrived when she was only a day or two old. It was the Victoria Day long weekend in May. The snow was melting in the mountains and the river was starting to flood. The geese had arrived in the valley months before, building their nests along the riverbanks. On Victoria Day Lucy had hatched and her and her siblings must have followed their parents onto the raging river. With the high water they would have been swept away downstream. But Lucy was an independent gal and a survivor even at one day old. People visiting our valley on holiday discovered her, all alone, walking up the road beside the river. This tiny little yellow fuzzy orphan was walking bravely in the direction of her new home. The people who found her picked her up and took her to the nearest home they could see, which was my Mom’s place. My mom brought her to me to care for. That afternoon I adopted Lucy with no idea what that would mean to my life.

For the first week or so she would nestle under my hair by the side of my neck, cuddled in until she was ready to eat. For the first couple of nights I let her sleep with me and then I moved her into a nest box with a heat lamp at one end. Lucy was soon spending much of her day outside. Although we had ducks and chickens, she very much loved our border collie, Jess. She could easily follow Jess around through the grass by watching the white tip on the end of Jess’s tail. Lucy walked with us on most of our outings. When she got older, she would sometimes fly down to the river for a swim. When Jess and I walked down to meet her, she would become very excited to see us and then follow us home.

Lucy likes to sit with us when we are out on our porch, she loves to help with gardening projects, and she likes to come in the house if there is something interesting going on. Although we have a large pond on our lawn, Lucy prefers to hang out where I park my car. For reasons we do not know, Lucy loves my car. She likes to sit by it and she will protect it if people she does not know come around it.  She also will excitedly follow the car when I drive away, so every time I leave I put a small gate across the top of the driveway so she understands she is not to come. And every night she likes to settle in and sleep by my car. 

But the person Lucy loves the most is my Mom. Mom is now 94 years old. My Mom often comes to my house to help sweep the patio or rake the lawn and Lucy sticks right beside her. She intently watches everything Mom does and tries to help her. She talks in little goose tones letting mom know that on that first day, four years ago, a special friendship was formed between the two of them. Although Lucy and I are very close, I love to watch the bond between Lucy and my Mom. It’s all part of Lucy’s distinct character and the life with us that she has decided to embrace.

Raising Lucy from the time she was a day old has bonded her to us. During her first fall we were not sure what to expect; was she going to have the instinct to fly south and leave us. As temperatures dropped, flocks of geese would fly down the valley heading for warmer climes but Lucy never appeared to have any interest in following them. She never seems to react at all when geese fly over. She is free to leave at any time but she seems content to live here all year long. It has been five winters now that Lucy has stayed with us. She continues to fly away once in awhile to head down to the river but she always returns. Once she was gone for two nights before she came back. It seems that this is home for her now and we welcome her into our little flock. It’s a strange flock for a goose; a few humans, dogs, eleven chickens, a handful of ducks, and my blue car. It seems to work for her. She has a good life and she brings a lot of joy and happiness to those who get to know her. She’s a beautiful adult Canada goose and it’s wonderful to think of the full life she has lived surviving the flood and boldly walking up the road alone all those years ago. 

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