Thames River, ON - Grace M
When I was young at the river, I remember running carelessly towards my parents, asking over and over again to touch the ducks and geese and fish. I remember squatting at the very edge of the rough and mossy boulders, watching the ducks underneath me as they drenched their beautiful feathers into the glassy water. With one hand on a boulder, and the other holding a large chunk of flatbread, I inched even closer to the edge. I started tearing off little pieces of the bread, gently rolling the soft dough in between my fingers. When I was satisfied with the size, I lightly tossed them into the river, the water gently rippling with every piece I threw. In the distance, I could already see the ducks approaching me with their damp skin and feathers, filling the air with their synchronized quacks. Excitement would surge through my body as they swam closer and dunked their shiny beaks into the water, grabbing every piece, one by one.
When I was young at the river, I always listened to the squawking and quacking and flapping of the geese and ducks. I constantly smelled the soil-like, fishy, and unpleasant odour of the river, while still finding it quite calming. I would occasionally dip my fingertips into the chilly water, watching as it glided through the narrow gaps of my fingers and created little waves that followed my every movement. I remember regularly eating fruit at the nearby park with my family. The fresh, sweet, and tangy juices would fill my mouth, as the blazing sun tickled my skin. I could always see the river in the distance, light reflecting off of every wave and ripple and
splash, glistening in the radiant sunlight.
When I was young at the river, I always wanted to explore. I would pull random things out of the water, as well as toss things in, such as sticks, leaves, and pebbles. I always found this amusing for some odd reason, and when I would laugh and talk and play with my family, I felt free. When I would occasionally see some fish, I would always shout to my siblings and hastily grab their attention. With all three of us mesmerized, we would go as close as we could to the water, all of our eyes following the fishes’ flowy fins. It made us so happy to see fish swimming around playfully, even for just a few seconds. We crouched at the rocky edge, smiling ear to ear.
At the river, I always used to watch the animals. I remember when I named three ducks who were closest to the boulder at the time. There was no way that I was able to tell them apart, but it brought me joy either way. I used to watch the geese submerge their heads under the water to graze on aquatic plants, while others flapped their hefty wings. I remember being slightly afraid of the geese, but I soon got over that fear and found that watching them play and scavenge for food in the river was very entertaining. When I was young, Thames River was where I made some of my most cherished memories, and I will most definitely continue to do so in the future.