Random Encounters Along Logan Boulevard

Yesterday afternoon, Liz and I went out to grab a late-afternoon coffee. We also decided to take advantage of the gorgeous day, and were planning on taking some photographs of her latest sewing project.

As we stepped out of our building, we immediately spotted two guys who had set up a slackline between two trees. We were watching them practice as we walked by, and after a few moments… the temptation was too much, and I headed over to go chat with them.

Turns out Will and Josh were friends who lived in the neighborhood. Both of them were incredibly friendly and patient with me, as I peppered them with questions. Up until now, I had only seen videos, but had never encountered a actual slackline before.

Will, balancing.

Josh balancing, as Will watches. I realize now that the only photos I have of Josh and Will show them a bit off-balance. I should emphasize that they were, indeed, staying balanced on the line (despite what these images show).

As I asked more about the mechanics of things, Will offered to let me give the line a try. I happened to be wearing flip-flops, and was suddenly in a unique position to give this thing a whirl.

Here’s me, trying to get a leg up…

I think I got one foot on the thing, and at my best was in the air for 0.5 seconds. Not sure my second foot ever even made it to the line.

I got in three tries, and then politely excused myself. It was actually quite cool, and I could see myself staying there another hour (easily), trying to work on my balance. But I didn’t want to take advantage of Will and Josh’s line by hogging it.

As we were leaving, two younger kids strolled by and immediately asked if they could give the line a try. I imagine Will and Josh get this kind of random stranger attention all the time…

We headed across Logan Boulevard to find a spot to take photos, and en route… happened to see a woman with a parrot perched on her shoulder! My curiosity got the better of me again, and we stopped to chat. This is Ellen, whose pet parrot is named Birdie.

Before I knew it, Birdie was being transferred over to Liz’s hand.

Birdie, just hanging out.

Birdie and Ellen were talking back and forth a bit, but I wasn’t quick enough to get it on video (it was pretty cool).

We learned that Birdie tends to walk around, while they’re out on the boulevard. Apparently, Birdie is fearless when it comes to other dogs… and when they encounter one another, dogs tend to back off as they’re not sure what’s happening.

A lot of really fun, random encounters, in the space of maybe 20 minutes. I love my neighborhood, particularly on days when the weather is good and people are out enjoying the sunshine.

With their slacklines. And their parrots.

Logan Square rocks.

Mario Wallenda, Crossing the Chicago River
Birds of a Feather
Two Birds, Perching on a Bird
Always Ask

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