Things that are awesome #3

In the past few years, my dad has picked up this marvelously random hobby of building and painting wooden birdhouses.  Sometimes the houses come plain but pre-made, sometimes he buys a build-your-own-birdhouse kit,  hell, sometimes he even makes them completely from scratch.

No matter where they initially come from, they all end up a mismatch of brightly painted lacquer, piling up steadily — to my mother’s dismay — on my parent’s kitchen table.

A few of Dad's Birdhouses

A few of Dad's Birdhouses

Naturally, the sheer number of birdhouses over the past number of years translates over to mean basically everyone who has met my father now owns a birdhouse or seven.  And yet, throughout the year they seem to continue to multiply, and I’ve never fully understood to where the rest of them disappear in order to make room for new arrivals. I mean, honestly, there are only so many birdhouses my grandma can have in her garden.

Tonight I stopped bymy parents’ house for dinner and a catch-up , and afterwards my dad decided he would give me company on my way home and walk to the store with me, since it’s about halfway between their house and mine.

On the way there, my dad — who is 63 — starts bubbling over, asking me if I notice anything different about the neighborhood.

I crock and eyebrow in confusion.

“Does it seem more colorful?” He asks.

Eyebrow… Skeptical glance… Confusion…

Wait. An inkling.

“Dad,” I say tentatively, “Are you giving our neighbors birdhouses?”

“No, not reeeeaally…” He responds.

I look around… realize we’re on a block where we don’t actually know any of the residents.  And then it hits me.  I have a memory of something which happened several years ago.

“Umm… are you putting birdhouses in people’s gardens anonymously???”

He giggles, actually giggles, in all his 63-year-old glory, “NOOOOoooo…. Well, maaaaaaayyyyybeeeee….”

I stare, incredulously.

Apparently, while walking to the store one night, he saw a house which had a decrepit birdhouse sitting in the front yard, and he decided to wander back a couple of hours later and tie one of his finished birdhouses on a tree branch right inside the fence.

And three months later it’s still there.

And this is not the only house to which he’s stealthily gifted his hobby.

My 63-year-old father is a giggling neighborhood birdhouse fairy.

That’s kind of beyond awesome.

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1 Response so far »

  1. 1

    shawncita said,

    You’re right, it’s seriously beyond awesome!!! I wish I had a birdhouse hobby–I’d “borrow” your dad’s awesome idea for Seattle! Thanks for sharing a really great story.


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