North Augusta, S.C. -
Their names are Solomon and Sheba and for those along Jackson Avenue in North Augusta, they are family.
“They are like children, but I do have a daughter. But, these are dear pets and I enjoy them,” says Judy Koon, who introduced the geese to the pond near her home.
These geese have been a joy, not just for a couple of years, but a couple of decades...when it comes to the male, Solomon.“He's 26, he's the same age as my grandsons. I know how old he is, but his mate is younger,” said Koon.
But, Solomon doesn't just have Sheba to look after him, he also has the goose ladies of Jackson Avenue.
Teresa Layman shows how they’ve grown close enough to feed them by hand. “Little by little, every day I'd come down, feed them, and get closer and closer,” she said. But, they haven't always been these hands-on with Solomon. “I was terrified of him,” she said.
Layman says Solomon used to walk up and down Jackson Avenue chasing people away who got too close. He appears to have mellowed with age, but only to a point.
Another hand belongs to Dianne Brown, another goose lady. “He gave me a little nip and, of course, I’ve got a little bruise there on my hand," she said. “A 26-year-old friend and he nipped?" we asked. “He still bites the hand that feeds him,” she said with a laugh.
But, the hands of these ladies on Jackson Avenue will continue to reach out to these two fowl they are so fond of.
“Does anybody say, 'Judy, come on they're birds'?" we asked Koon. "No," she answered. “Well, I'm saying it. They’re birds!" we added. “Well, birds are beautiful, too. I enjoy seeing the birds," she said.
And, if you happen by the pond on Jackson Avenue, take a gander at Solomon and Sheba, But, you may want to think twice about shaking hands.