My grandma LOVES humming birds. And when I say LOVE I really do mean the full meaning of the word. When I would visit her we would sit outside on her wooden bench on a hot summer day, binoculars in hand and we would watch them eat out of her multiple feeders strewn across the yard. She would also have a pen and notepad, writing down what every single humming bird looked like.
“Look April! I think I have seen this little guy before! Lets name him, since it seems like he’s going to stick around.”
He was a little green fella, and we sat there brainstorming name ideas. Greenie, Evergreen, Verde… That’s when my dad walked by, “Diarrhea! Wait no… Explosive Diarrhea! Yup. Thats what his name name will be.”
Of course my grandma and I got really mad, probably slapped him on the arm, and continued to brainstorm.
When the family visits to grandmas ended, we returned to our little island in the San Juans and back to our usual lives. Hauling water from a little spring on our property to wash our laundry, chopping and stacking wood, and playing in the forest we called home. One day I was playing outside and I stumbled upon a hummingbird laying on the ground.
He is so beautiful! I wish grandma was here to see him, humming birds always made her so happy. Perhaps I could write her a letter and tell her all about him! But it wouldn’t be the same. Even if I described him perfectly in the letter, it would never be as good as seeing him in person.
Thats when I had the BEST idea ever! However I had to be very discreet, this was going to be a tricky task and if anyone found out what I was about to do, I was going to get myself into big trouble. But I was brave. I was a good liar. And I had a mission to complete.
I run inside and head straight to my moms craft tote. I rummage through it until I find the supplies I need to pull this off. I run back outside and carefully wrap the humming bird in the off white tissue paper and place his tiny body inside of a little white ring box. I bring the box inside and straight to my room. I grab piece of paper and start to write a letter to my grandma, describing the situation and telling her that no one could know about the secret package. I remember one specific line I wrote that was extremely crucial.
Grandma, no matter what, you can’t send me a letter back saying anything about the ‘package’… THEY will read it and THEY will find out!
Finally I had it all squared away and I take the package to my parents. This was going to be the hardest part. Parents. Always asking too many questions. But I got lucky this time. And before I knew it the package with a dead bird in it was whirling through the American mailing system 1000 miles to my unsuspecting grandma.
Just as I had asked, I didn’t hear a word from grandma. But after a while I started to worry. How did she react? Did she like him? Did he even get delivered? Oh my gosh! What if she was mad?!?! I didn’t know what to do.
After a while I guessed I would find out next time we visited her, but we didn’t visit grandma for a long while and I soon forgot about the little hummingbird and the box, and the years passed by…
I walked through my grandmas door and gave her a big hug as she sat on her bed. Above her bed sat a huge shelf full of stuffed animals that my grandpa won from the machines in the grocery stores. You know, the one with the big claw, that literally no-one wins. Well he was a lucky guy I guess because he won all the time and he would collect them over the years. That would be the reason why my room is filled with stuffed animals to this day. Anyways… Everyone gets settled in and is visiting amongst each other when my grandma leans over and whispers in my ear.
“I got the package and he is safe.”
I was confused. I had no idea what she was talking about. But then my grandpa took me into the garage to their freezer and he opened it up. Among the Otter-pops, popsicles, hamburger, and other frozen foods, I saw my little white box.
So after all those years, my grandma had kept my promise and my dead hummingbird in her freezer.