Thursday, February 16, 2017

Charlie, My New Roomie

My life is for the birds. Well, one bird anyway--a tiny blue and white parakeet that I rescued from the county shelter two weeks ago. I had contemplated getting a pet to keep me company, but quickly discarded the idea of a dog (it would need to be walked and cleaned up after) and a cat (I’d have to deal with a litter box). Hence, a bird named Charlie fit the bill (no pun intended).  

I once wrote an article called, “I Gave My Husband the Bird.” Fred loved birds, so for Christmas one year I gave him a yellow cockatiel. She was part of our family for many years. This bird, which Fred named “Bird,” had the run of the house. A ladder from her cage to the floor gave her easy access to anywhere she wanted to go. She turned out to be my bird as she only acknowledged Fred during football season. Once he settled in his chair on Sundays with a bag of potato chips, she would hightail it over to him to beg for a chip.

Otherwise, she followed me all over the house, into the office, the kitchen, and at the dining room table where she’d grab a corn niblet off my plate. Her demise came one day when Fred moved to the right to avoid stepping on her and she moved to the right to avoid being stepped on. Talk about a perfect storm lining up!

After that, the house was way too quiet with two adults but no little four-ounce ball of fluff. Within a week, I dragged Fred to the bird store and we bought another yellow cockatiel that looked just like Bird. We named this one Crash because she slammed into the walls every time she took flight. The ladder was removed so she couldn’t get down to the floor as easily as her predecessor. When we moved from California, we gave Crash to a friend, assuming it would be better than moving her across the country.

It’s been over three years since the move. I realized I missed the chirping and personality of a bird. Not finding any cockatiels for sale in the area, I found Charlie, the first parakeet I’ve owned since high school. He’s still getting used to me and his surroundings and only occasionally chirps. Mostly, he sits on his perch, a very quiet roommate.

The shelter named him Charlie assuming he was a male; time will tell if they’re right. We thought the cockatiels were males, too, until they both started laying eggs.

So now I no longer ramble around the house alone; there’s someone else to talk to and whose needs I have to consider. I guess you could say I gave myself the bird--his name is Charlie.

Quote of the Day: My heart is like a singing bird. Christina Georgina Rosetti