We have no fear of a sequel to the famed Hitchcock movie, The Birds. Laura and I are BFFs with the neighborhood birds. Small flocks of birds grow in numbers daily, but we fear not. No mass of birds will attack us as long as we keep Lake St. John brimming with water.
Lake St. John is no Great Lake. Truth be known, the lake is nothing more than a pothole now grown to small crater size. Destruction wrought by the cars that become a nuisance driving up and down the alley during the school year lead to the huge hole.
Where the alley meets 9th Street, on the northeast corner of our home, the pavement has given way requiring careful navigation through or around the deep hole to clear or enter the alley safely. We hope that just a little of the city tax money set aside for street improvement might come to our street before we have to rename Lake St. John to Crater Lake II. The original Crater Lake in Oregon is the deepest lake in the United States. We surely do not want that. Yet, we do not want to upset our new friends.
Water slowly evaporates in Lake St. John, making it a perfect summer bird bath. Watching birds splash in the water is a delight when we sit on the front porch. We joke that when it rains, the water flowing down the alley creates the Mater Dei River and feeds Lake St. John. The names come from the Catholic school at the south end of our block and the small lake takes its name from our church, St. John’s Lutheran, across the alley from us.
Before this month, the problem was that the lake never filled unless there was rain. In the scorching months of summer, we would have long ago given up any hope of saving our shaky lawn. That changed when we recently sodded our front lawn. Committment to keep our yard saturated and green means dragging our hose here and there for a deep soaking that consistently fills the lake.
That is good news for the birds. They love us. With highs over 100 degrees predicted for Thursday, we will be watering the lawn and the birds will be thanking us as they splash and play in what to them is the beautiful Lake St. John.