This isn't one of those they were smacking their kid, leaving their dog in the car, cutting in line kind of situations. I just want to tell you what happened, what I did about it and how they responded (spoiler alert: no blood was shed). Then maybe you can chime in with what you (think you) would have done in my place. Deal?
I took the kids to the pool today to expel some energy but I brought a book, because some days I just don't feel like getting in a public pool. Just in case. You know. Anyway. I was sitting on the snack bar patio, which has a roof for shade, and is fenced off from the rest of the pool area. An employee (teenager?) was using a hose to clear off a bunch of trash, branches, leaves etc (it was a bit windy) from the concrete and we chatted a bit while she worked. She was very thorough and it took her a good 30+ minutes to clean up and put everything back where it belonged. Not long after, a mom with two youngish (6 or7 y.o.?) children came and sat at a table near me with their snacks. A few little wrens were flying around- 2 or 3- but there were no nests or anything, they were just visiting. The kids started tearing up their bread/buns and throwing it on the ground to "feed" the birds (they were having none of that though!). They made two pretty large patches of mushed up bread pieces around their table.
So, what would you do? After that girl worked so hard? And the birds obviously weren't interested. Plus this was enough crumbs for a flock, not 3 tiny birds that would fit in your palm with your fingers closed.
My husband hates this about me. He is a "it's none of my business" kinda guy. I'm a "I'll speak up if I feel it's wrong" kinda gal. So, I walked over and very quietly, and calmly, and politely said "I'm sorry to interrupt and normally I wouldn't but I thought you should know. Not 20 minutes ago a young employee spent a pretty large chunk of time cleaning everything, including dropped food crumbs, off the patio. I don't think it's very nice of your children to throw a bunch of food all over it again." She said something I didn't catch so I told her I was deaf and she repeated "They were just feeding the birds. The little birds." And I replied (this did get a bit snarky but I was trying to be very polite about it) "I understand but this is a public pool, not a pond or lake. They might not want you to feed the birds." Then I gave a little nod and went back to my book. About 10 minutes later the kids got up and picked all the bread up (because the birds did not eat ANY OF IT) and put it in the trash bin. I did feel kind of bad, and I know it's rude to point out someone else's rudeness, but when I think of how hard that young employee worked I just had to step up.
So, what do you think?