How to rescue a butterfly

Ugh.  What a day.  What a miserable, miserable day.  All I want to do is go home, eat a tub of ice cream and play Netflix Roulette.

I walk a short path from my day job to a parking garage in downtown Albany.  As I’m walking along the pathway, getting ready to enter the parking garage, something catches my eye.  On the ground.  Fluttering, like a leaf.

It’s a butterfly.

But it’s not flying away.  It’s on the ground – it’s actually in the road.

I look closer.  Its wings are moving, but the little butterfly doesn’t have enough strength to fly away.

The next car that drives by will certainly crush it.

No. I can’t have that.  Not today.

I step into the street.  A car slowly drives around me.

The butterfly’s still moving.  It’s not stuck to the asphalt, so maybe I have a chance here.

I slowly coax it onto my finger.

It timidly climbs on.

And before any of you start saying, “Pics, Chuck, or it didn’t happen.”

I looked around.  Downtown Albany does not have any milkweed for this little guy to nosh on.  In fact, it’s late September, what the heck is a summer flyer like a Monarch Butterfly doing in the Capital Region at this time of year?

There’s a plant over behind a chain-link fence.  If nothing else, the little guy can at least stay there until he decides his next move, whatever that might be.

Carefully cradling the butterfly in my hand – taking care not to touch its wings, lest the oil from my fingertips damage the butterfly’s wingspan –

I guide it over to a plant, and let him climb off my fingers onto the plant.

Apparently the butterfly was okay enough to hold onto the plant, and he did sit still long enough for me to get some butterfly pictures.

Okay.  Time to let Mother Nature take her course.

And for a moment, things seemed okay.  The little guy was safe.  Nobody was getting a butterfly-shaped splotch on their Goodyears today.

And on my way home, the “Ice Cream and Netflix” slowly dissipated into a more positive endeavor.

I mean, what can you do when you see someone in distress?

You help out.

Even if it’s only a butterfly.