The hippos and the yellow birds

In Botswana when we were on our boat safari, we saw a hippo on the shore with a tiny yellow bird on his back.

“Is the bird not afraid of the hippo? It’s gigantic.”

Our guide’s name was Bond. Like James Bond only Bond was his first name. I don’t know if we ever knew his last name. I still think that’s funny because when he said “My name is Bond” I waited for him to add “James Bond” and I wondered if they know who that is in other countries.
Anyways, he explained that the birds eat bugs that live on the hippos like fleas on a dog. Someone else asked if the hippos get annoyed by the birds. But no, they like it, because the bugs bite them, and they have no way to get them off(imagine a hippo scratching itself with its foot like a dog), so they’ll let the birds sit on them all day long. They’ll even walk around and go about their day and the bird just hangs out for the ride and keeps pecking away.

So the birds aren’t hungry and the hippos aren’t itchy and everyone’s happy. And sometimes I think of that out of nowhere and I laugh all over again because it’s adorable.

I don’t have a point today; I just wanted to talk about it.
I love that God made these great big creatures that the rest of nature would be afraid of, but these defenseless little birds love them because that’s where they get their food and the hippos love the birds because that’s the only way they can get rid of the itchy bugs. I feel like there’s a metaphor somewhere in there and I’ll probably think about that and write about it someday.


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