My Ramble

When a pet becomes your family member

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My family was due to arrive from my in-laws after a two week long vacation about two years back and I wanted to surprise my kids with a gift. From the pet market I got a small cute teeny weeny duckling, for them. By the time I placed the little birdie in my car I had changed my mind. I went back and got a bald, ugly baby parrot which could not have been more than a week old. Little did I know this creature would become so attached to us and we to it. Frankly, I wasn’t even sure if it would survive. As all previous attempts at rearing one had gone in vain.

The kids danced with joy on seeing the little creature. My son, than barley two wanted to hold the helpless meat ball in his hands all the time. All efforts to prevent him, proved futile. We fed the baby parrot, (name Too Too) Nestle Cerelac with a needleless syringe as advised by the pet shop owner. By the end of first week the parakeet had begin to respond. He would make this strange “Tain Tain” sound when he was hungry, waiting for someone to load him up with more Cerelac. Weeks turned in to months and Too Too began to grow a beautiful green coat of feathers on his feeble body. We hand fed him all this time, till he was big enough to enjoy the fruits, dates, chapati (local bread) and almonds. He loved to sit on our shoulders. He would get closer to my face a put his red beak in my mouth as if kissing me. (Not sure if he meant to kiss, and I am still not sure when he does this).

A tough moment came when we had to shift to another city. What do we do of Too Too? There could be no two views about it. We made him sit in our car and drove all the way, over 600 kilo metres with Too Too enjoying the music and meals with us. About a year back, he started mimicking my wife (thanks to her constant talking). He is now two years old, I can see him getting a red ring around his neck which turns jet black on his chin. A sign that he is maturing.

I remember the time about a year and a half back when he had just began to fly and we had still not cut his feathers. He flew on one of his exploratory flights and landed right in to the frying pan with hot oil in it. He let out a shriek of pain. Luckily only one of his feet got burnt badly. We bandaged him for a week until he was fine. After that I cut his feathers. One time he escaped from his cage. We found him sitting next to a caged parrot just a block away. When we go for a few days leaving him alone in the house, he doesn’t talk to us for a week at least as if complaining of his loneliness, or protesting our ditching him.

Too Too is an early riser, and a rabble rouser he is , indeed. He will start his day with making the sounds he has learned. A few days back he learned to “Meow” like a cat. Now, that is cute, really. And it’s a lot of fun. He has his breakfast with me daily and has developed a habit of stealing my toast. At lunch or dinner if we don’t bring him to the dinning table he looks through the cage and simply whistles. As if saying, “hey, did you forget me.”

Too Too has now become a part of our family. We love him and its so much fun having him with us. I never knew having a pet would turn out to be so much fun and that we would become so much emotionally attached to it. Love you, “Too Too”.

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