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Showing posts from February, 1999

Family Rituals II

I am able to recognize the family car. Every time it is the same ritual: the car is parked, the family jump out, run inside the house, all three of them shout from downstairs (which I answer at the top of my voice), they run upstairs, take me out of my cage and the fun starts. I feel totally, absolutely and unconditionally accepted.

Potty Training

My family is trying to get me potty trained. About every ten minutes they put me on the kitchen floor (there is no carpet there) and yell "Potty! Go on, potty!" Everyone who heard about it laughed at it, but it really does get result. I hardly ever drop anything on something valuable. I got so conditioned that even if I don't really have to go, I try my best to drop something. Now who's laugh lasted longest, eh?!

I Did It! I Flew!

Yes, yes, yes, I did it! I flew! I was sitting on Sophia's hand and Jan walked in with a treat for me. I wanted it so badly, that I flew about a meter through the air to reach it. I was so happy, and so were my family members. Even the visitors were impressed.

Inside Information

If you want to know how my diary entries come into existence: while Sophia is typing, I sit on her knee and read along. I can see that she masters her job, but after a while I decide to give her a hand and jump on the keyboard. She moans, hits the backspace several times and switches off the caps lock again. She moves her mouse to save the document and I jump on her hand. Just in time, she sees that she nearly hits the "Save changes - NO" button and tries to move the mouse in the right direction, which I consider such a nice game that it is nearly impossible for her. Finally, the document is saved. Another entry is ready for publication on the Internet.

Love the Mail

I love the ritual of Hilke opening the mail: the sound of the envelopes being ripped open, the mail taken out and sometimes read aloud. Some of the letters are for me: I can't read, but I am allowed to chew on them and rip them apart. I think those letters are called "bills", but what they have to do with my bill beaks me, correction: beats me!


Bird Hat

I have developed a nasty little habit of climbing on Sophia's head all the time. She likes it when I sit on her shoulder or arm, but she is so sensitive on her head! Her hands are full of scratches already and she says she doesn't want them on her head as well. She keeps trying to prevent it, but each time I am faster. One big jump, and there I sit again. Every time she picks me up and puts me back on her knee or arm, but I wonder who is going to win this battle in the long run. So far I am on the winning side.

Exit Spoon Feeding

From today on I have to eat all by myself. I don't mind: yesterday I didn't even finish half of my baby formula. My family thought that was the sign to stop spoon feeding me and they are right, now I am really big enough to be weaned. Besides, occasionally I snatch something out of their mouths. They don't like it as much as I do.

Maturity

This Sunday my family left me in my cage in full confidence of my climbing abilities. Last week they were still worried that I would fall, but they have seen my climbing activities during the previous week and decided it is safe to leave me alone in my cage. I am glad they did this; I really feel too big to stay in a cardboard box with sawdust now. Besides, they threw it away yesterday. Did I mention that since a few days, I have started to sleep in the cage even during the whole night?


CopyBird

Mirror Bird is boring after all. It has copied everything that I could think of, and I can clearly see that we both don't know what else to do. If you want to know the truth, this bird has started to look a bit featherbrained to me.

Again That Bird!

Things are getting peculiarer and peculiarer. Again I saw the strange bird at exactly the same spot where I had left him yesterday. The family told me it is a "mirror" I'm looking at... but what's a mirror? Thank goodness the bird didn't attack me this time, so neither did I. I think I'm even beginning to get used to the Mirror Bird. He certainly looked as if he would like to strut with borrowed feathers... and secretly I know that mine make the finer bird.


Who Is that Stranger?

Just now I had a big fright! I explored the room as usual and wanted to play with a pen on the floor. When I got closer, suddenly there were two pens... but what was more, suddenly there was another bird in the room! All my feathers suddenly stood on end as I put them all up to show who is boss around here... and at exactly that very moment so did that bird! I stared it in the eyes and loudly growled like a dog, but it didn't dare to growl back. The family laughed and laughed, but I don't think there was anything funny, was there? Quite upset I walked away, but fortunately, when I looked back, the strange bird didn't follow me. It was all very, very peculiar.

Bouncy Steps

We have discovered another new game. I am sitting on Sophia's shoulder and she walks around with huge bouncing steps. Then I start flapping my wings and pretend I am flying. It is a good exercise for my balance and great fun too.


Laboriousness

My family said to each other that I am in a "laborious" age. What is that supposed to mean? The only things I do all day is climbing on everybody's shoulders (almost rolling off), climbing the bars of my cage (not being able to get down myself), hanging upside down on my ladder (not being able to rescue myself), chewing on everything I see (my specialty is to separate buttons from clothes), etceteras, etceteras. Laborious? Me? You must be kidding...


Exploring the World

Ever since I am able to climb out of my box, I get out every second and explore the whole world, that is, the whole living room. Jan and Hilke don't like it too much, because for one thing I am not really housebroken yet and secondly they are afraid to step on me.

For My Own Safety

Every Sunday my family goes away for a couple of hours. Until now that was no problem, but since I won't stay in my cardboard box and I am too small to stay in my huge cage unsupervised, they put me in my box and covered it with something heavy. They felt terrible about it, but really, I didn't mind. It was warm and dark in there so I just went to sleep. Although I have to say that I was very happy to see them again. Obviously, so were they.


I Think I Flew!

Hilke saw me flying!!! Well, it wasn't really flying yet, but she rolled my ball over the floor and when I chased after it I flapped my wings and bounced over the floor. Good, eh?

Jailbird

For the first time I have been playing in my new cage. I sat on Sophia's lap and she just let me see the cage. After a while, I got curious and climbed inside. I enjoyed it so much that I didn't want to leave again. I had the opportunity to climb, to swing and to play. I think I wouldn't mind to dwell there more often, but after half an hour Sophia took me out again. She thinks I am too small to be in my cage unguarded, because if I climb to the top, it will be a long fall down. And I have to admit it: I can't climb all that well yet.


Showers Are Wet

Today Jan gave me another shower in Sophia's living room. I liked it better than the first time, although I was still a bit suspicious. Everything was wet: Sophia's sweater, the floor, the wall and some floppy disks on the table. Jan thinks that even I got a wet spot on me, although Sophia is not sure. They figured that next time they'll be giving me my shower in the bathroom.

Eat! Eat! EAT!!!

Eleven weeks old now and still spoon fed once a day. Ever since I am able to cry for my food, my family waits until I give the sign: "Eat! Eat! EAT!!!." Not every visitor understands it at once (or more specific: no visitor understands it at all), but my family never fails me. They know me so well now.


Love of Money

I like money. The coins shine so brilliantly and they make such a nice sound when they fall on the ground. Paper money is nice too: the sound when I rip it apart gives me the kicks! But money is not everything. When given the choice between one sunflower seed and ten thousand bank notes I'd always choose the former.

Ew! Eat!

My family said to each other that I'm beginning to be a chatterbox. I chat and chat and chat, but so far the only thing they understand is "eat" (and I'm sorry to say that they are the only ones who recognize it - all visitors only hear "Ew!"). I said it this morning, but instead of baby formula they gave me some parrot seeds, fruit and fresh water! Bah, being a toddler certainly has disadvantages. Ah well. I can still look forward to my baby food tonight. I am still not ready to be weaned and my family appreciates that fully.


Fly! Who, Me? Nooo

This evening, I practiced my flying again. I flapped my wings frantically and finally stood on one toe. Unfortunately, I wasn't able to lift that last toe as well, but I'll keep trying. So far, the only things that truly fly in my vicinity are the sawdust, pieces of newspaper and empty toilet rolls. The family had visitors and proudly I showed them how skillful I can make a complete mess in less than a minute. Somehow I don't think Hilke appreciated it.

No More a Baby

I have started to use my claws to hold my toys and food. I can sit on one foot and hold a piece of willow wood in my other claw. More and more I beginning to look and act like a proper parrot. From now on, I declare myself ex-baby. I am definitely a toddler now.


Being Weaned

From now on I am down to only one spoon feeding a day. My family noticed that I am not that hungry anymore in the morning, so they decided to feed me only at night. That's all right with me: I enjoy my parrot seed, fruit and vegetables. Also, I like to nibble on a piece of willow wood. I feel very confident and I think soon it will be the time to be weaned, but only very, very gradually. This is an important time in the life of a baby bird!


Scratches

Lately my whole family has had to live with scratches on their hands. They have taught me to step on their hand with the command "Come on" and step off again when they say "Down". I understand those commands very well and try to obey them, but I am a bit clumsy still. Sometimes I loose my balance and grab their wrist as tight as I can, and with my long sharp nails I scratch them at those moments. Sorry, family. I don't do it on purpose.

My First Shower

This morning I had my very first shower ever. Sophia sprayed a few drops of lukewarm water on me with a spray bottle. I heard it is the highlight of the day for a lot of parrots and absolutely necessary for our welfare, but this first time it was all a bit scary. I was glad when it was all over. Fortunately, I noticed that with one big shake I was completely dry again. I hope I will like it better the next time and so does my family.

Big But Still a Baby

Tomorrow I will be ten weeks old and I feel like I am such a big bird already! I am able to climb a parrot ladder now with the aid of my feet, my wings and my beak. Only, the first time when I reached the top, I lost my balance and hang upside down on one of the sports. My family laughed so loud I thought they would burst, but soon they came to my rescue. I am not allowed to climb again unsupervised.


One Month

I have been living with the Van der Nent family for one month now. On the first day of this year, when I was only five weeks old, I became a part of their life. At first I was a little nervous, but in a few days I felt I had become a full member of the family. All the attention I got made me prosper. However, although I may look like a full-grown parrot to the inexperienced eye, I am still considered a toddler. I am totally dependent on my human parents and it will be four more years before I am fully mature.