The Tale of the Lone Seagull

Written by Kelly Tallariti on August 20, 2012

This story was written by Kelly Tallariti, the charming manager of our condominium building in downtown Seattle. Kelly manages to keep all of us unruly residents in line, always with a kind word and a smile. His warm heart really shows through in this recounting of a brush with nature just outside our doorstep. Thanks, Kelly.

And thanks also to Nick Spinarski, our multi-talented day door person and filmmaker who graduated from Cornish College of the Arts for the photo. He’s also working on a video of the bird that I will post once it’s completed. 

After the frantic pace of the morning commute, saying hello and goodbye to residents hurriedly off to work , it felt like another routine Monday morning at 98 Union, or so I thought.

Sitting at my desk, worshipping a cup of ever-so-strong coffee, discussing the day’s tasks with Nick, I managed to focus on what appeared to be a lone bird standing tall on his duck-like feet looking in the door at me as if saying, “Will you please get the door for me? ”

Though not the prettiest of young birds, there was something unique about this one.

Alone and seemingly content, he remained right where he was as we opened the doors and greeted him.

Then, in he strolled! He looked around the lobby and then discovered something quite appealing–a bronze kick plate at the base of the entry door.

Hypnotized at seeing what appeared to be another creature who looked just like him in the reflection, he somehow knew he was okay, though orphaned.

His only path of travel for the day was in one door and out the other, from one brass kick plate to the other.

Attracting a crowd of onlookers and well wishers throughout the day, we knew something special was going on. We knew we couldn’t leave until this somehow tranquil and calming ugly-duckling seagull was safe.

Assuming he was orphaned, it was up to us (Nick and I), plus Holly (one of our resident’s assistants), to rescue him.

With much thought, we decided the best approach would be to gently carry him to the lower tower rooftop. We decided that perhaps, if he did accidentally float down from the nest, his family would have a better chance of seeing him there.

As we set him down on the rooftop our intuition was correct, at least for the moment. First one adult seagull, then the entire flock, came down to greet him as if saying, “Where did you go ? You gave us such a scare. How dare you leave the nest without our permission.”

But as fast as this seemingly happy reunion began, it instantly turned into a version of Alfred Hitchcock’s ” The Birds,” with flocks of gulls swarming over us, taking the young bird’s face into their beaks, and pecking as if to kill!!!

We all knew that this was probably not the motherly love we hoped it to be; indeed, quite the opposite.

So, off we went once again, whisking the small bird back into our hands. . .back to the familiar bronze kick plate where life was peaceful.

At least for the moment ……all was well again for our lone seagull.

But something still had to be done with our new friend, as his new home was clearly not in the reflection of a kick plate at 98 Union.

But where? Who? How?

Finally, after a bit of research, we discovered a Wildlife Rescue Shelter–Sarvey–that takes in orphaned and/or injured wildlife.

So once again off our orphaned seagull went with crate and mirror in a black Jeep on his way to what he would soon know as freedom.

Thank you lone bird for visiting us today at 98 Union and for bringing us all a little more peace…

Photo Credit: Nicholas Spinarski
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