OPINION: Sluiced in goose juice, we didn’t know ships from Shinola

Marg Johnson

Those of us who live at the south end of Lake Huron have access to a view that surpasses anything else in Canada, in my opinion.

Marg Johnson

At least we did before the pandemic, and one day when it’s over we will again.

If you’ve taken the Blue Water Bridge to the U.S. and had to wait at the top for the traffic to clear, the upside of that “wait” is the view both ways — north toward Lake Huron and its lineup of freighters, sailboats and fishing boats, and south to the St. Clair River and its owns array of watercraft.

It’s an exciting view, and one reason I’m proud to be someone raised in Sarnia-Lambton.

One day I had a wondrous experience while atop the bridge, something even more wondrous than the view. You can’t stage such a thing, but it did happen.

A close family friend of mine had a brand new red Ford Probe. Speaking as a passenger, that car was a wondrous invention. The back window slanted away to the trunk (a hatchback made of glass), with a massive sheet of glass on the roof and a front windshield that slanted way out to the hood. Wraparound side windows continued the theme.

In truth, it was much like travelling in a fish bowl — glass everywhere with a 360⁰ unimpeded view.

So I was able to watch in wonder as a massive flock of geese made its way across Lake Huron and headed over us in a perfect “V” formation. I could clearly see the feet tucked up against their chests, the huge wings flapping madly to follow the lead bird. The honking was loud, even inside our vehicle.

Then, the wondrous experience. With no warning, no specific honk or special wing flap, every one of those geese crapped at the same time, turning our lovely sunny interior into a cave in seconds. It turned dark as crap splattered that beautiful car. We were enveloped in goose poop.

We sat there, stunned, shocked by the logistics of so many geese letting loose at the same time, and hitting, apparently, only our vehicle. My friend frantically switched on the wipers, which only smeared the windshield. I could clearly see bits of corn, pieces of stone, and myriad other colours in the excrement. She tried squirting windshield fluid, which immediately turned the static mass into diarrhea.

When working with children I was frequently called upon to tell a story. Their favourite was always “The Goose Poop” story. For good reason, I suppose.

Sarnia’s Marg Johnson is a retired Certified Child & Youth Worker who formerly worked with behaviour children as an educational assistant at the York Catholic District School Board.