Sometimes you make the most ridiculous assumptions.

The other night I pulled up after driving all day and parked under the bridge at the Emerald Botanical Gardens. It was bloody hot. Western Queensland driving all day in the heat hot.

It was late and dark; the lights in the garden had dimmed to a glow. I had the car wide open thinking about all my well meaning friends telling me to stay safe, lock up, don’t talk to strangers.  All the usual things I ignore as I hug them goodbye.

Through the trees I could see a man at a table with a heap of buckets, shining his torch into the garbage bin and on the ground looking for food. I thought maybe I should take over the can of sardines I had but something stopped me; was it the safety warnings or something else?

It was very dark and very late and my inquisitive eyes could not really make out what he was doing. He seemed to be walking from tree to tree to tree, buckets in hand, shining the torch up and down the trunks, searching. Searching for what? What food could he possibly be looking for?

Bait! It occurred to me there must be something on the trees and he is a fisherman. He left after a few hours but had searched so many trees, bushes and shrubs.

In the morning I walked through that beautiful park suddenly remembering the man from the night before. I rushed up to the trees looking onto the trunks, on the bark on the branches for any clue as to what he might have been collecting. Not a clue. Dead cicadas?

It is then at the base of one tree I spotted the bread. Little pieces of bread at the bottom of all the trees. Was he trying to catch something? Was it bait? Was he collecting and eating the bread? Still baffled.

About thirty minutes later the birds came in. Flocks of lorikeets, parrots and even a few blue-faced honeyeaters feasting on … bread.

The man had been so careful, placing bread into sections of bark, in fact all over the trees, inside forks and into the crevices of small branches. Even in the fronds of palm trees and their skinny trunks.

The birds shrieked their delight moving from tree to tree as they ate their breakfast. You just felt their excitement: it was like a little kid’s treasure hunt.

Where was this man today? Was he somewhere hidden away to enjoy this most wonderful and magical morning he had created?

Sometimes you make the most ridiculous assumptions.

© 2015 Mel Irvine

4 responses to “Assumptions”

  1. pearlz Avatar

    Reblogged this on Pearlz Dreaming and commented:
    I just wanted to share this story from my friend Mel – you can leave your thoughts direct on her blog. Have you ever made assumptions?

  2. pearlz Avatar

    Mel could I reblog this onto my blog so more people can read it.

    1. mel irvine Avatar

      Thanks June. You personally have my invitation to reblog onto your site anytime.

      1. pearlz Avatar

        🙂 Thanks Mel.