What-up birds are a pair of seagulls who adopted the SOFTIN boat WaveWalker and visit us when we come back to harbor.
It is such a special treat to meet past SOFTIN passengers and listen to their memories. We had such a moment this past weekend while hosting a family yard sale at my home.
A grandmotherly type with three kids in tow came walked up the driveway.
I had a table set up with fishing gear for sale.
The three kids (ages 7 to 13) stopped at the table to admire the fishing lures while the grandma walked on to look at clothes and household items.
One kid said, "I've been on a boat. Do you know the 'What-up' birds"
That question about floored me, since the What-up birds are a pair of seagulls who adopted the SOFTIN boat, WaveWalker and visit us every time we come back to harbor.
If these kids met our pals the What-up birds, it had to have happened aboard our boat.
So I replied, "Yes, the What-up birds are my friends. How do you know those birds
The girl looked closely at me and I could see the recognition spark in her eyes. She said, "Hey, weren't you on that boat"
"Yes," I laughed. "I'm Captain David of SOFTIN, and Captain Tiffany (I pointed across the driveway at her) was there, too."
All three kids looked at her, and the same girl squealed, "I know Captain Tiffany!"
Tiffany rushed over and was immediately swarmed with hugs.
The youngsters couldn't talk and gesticulate fast enough to share their flood of happy memories from their SOFTIN trip with us.
At times they talked over each other and at times they talked in unison.
Through the whole story telling session they were wide-eyed and excited to relive and share their positive experiences and memories.
They had been referred to us by our collaborating partner, Child Abuse Listening and Mediation (CALM).
We have done many good works together.
These are moments to live for.....
Capt. David Bacon, Executive Director, SOFTIN