A Big Thing

He was weeding when he noticed a little thing, the little thing being a large manifestation of small, black ants. That so many ants were out there, on his gravel path that hooked around the house’s side, amused him. There were but a few weeds here. Other than the weeds, there was the path and some protective, decorative bark used as mulch.

But on a pause to wipe his brow and scratch his nose, he stared down at the next section designated for weeding. The small weeds were not random; they were orderly rows. The ants were not meandering around them, but tending the plants.

His conclusion struck him dumb. He hold onto it and nothing else in his mind for a few seconds before saying, “The ants are cultivating plants.”

This, he thought, was a big thing. He wasn’t very educated but he thought he’d read that settlements becoming agrarian was a major step forward step in human civilization. Breathing the warm air over his find, he thought about what he should do. He wondered if this scene was being repeated around the world. Retrieving his cell phone, he recorded the activity for thirty seconds and marveled about it.

He couldn’t weed there any longer; he became a little sick about what he might have already destroyed. He worried about what might happen to the ants and their farm. A storm was due tonight. Clouds were already gathering. He could imagine what a heavy rain would do to their world.

But it was their world. They’d come this far without him. He would leave them be and let the ants take control of themselves. They seemed to be doing well so far.

Besides, it gave him a good reason to abandon his weeding.


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