Homeless in Vancouver: Morning encounter to crow about

    1 of 3 2 of 3

      This morning (November 7th) in the 2800 block of Heather Street—as I approached the intersection of the alley on the south side of West 12th avenue—I unexpectedly found myself playing hopscotch with a crow.

      This crow, I realized, was landing beside me on my left, then waiting for me to ride my bike a few metres.

      Then it would take wing and catch up and land beside me; let me ride a few metres and so on.

      This went on for half of the 2800 block of Heather Street and when I turned east into the alley on the south side of the 600 block of West 12th Avenue…the crow followed me.

      A crow that was ready for its closeup?

      Corvus Imperious strikes a pose.
      Stanley Q. Woodvine

      I pulled up to the cedar fence behind the first apartment building on the north side of the alley and got off my bike, with the intention of checking the building’s recycling blue bins for returnable beverage containers.

      The crow glided past me and lighted atop the fence post that was nearest to where my bike was leaning.

      While I looked at the crow, it just sat on its perch and made no especial show of looking at me.

      It just looked around—all the way around; the way only crows and possessed children in movies can.

      What the crow did that was unusual (for a crow, at least) was calmly sit on its fence post while I stood less than a metre away and took photos.

      Who can guess what it’s thinking of—besides food?
      Stanley Q. Woodvine

      I’ll just say that it was no stretch to imagine that the crow was posing for me.

      Then without warning, after I had snapped six photos, the crow craned its head forward on it neck, as if to open its throat, and let go with a great, gravelly caw.

      With this, the “photo-shoot” was over.

      The crow pushed itself up off the fence post; its outstretched, charcoal blue wingtips caught the chill morning air and, just like that, it was gone.

      Stanley Q. Woodvine is a homeless resident of Vancouver who has worked in the past as an illustrator, graphic designer, and writer. Follow Stanley on Twitter at @sqwabb.