Friday, October 3, 2008
A Boy and His Parrot
By Jessica Pineda, Assistant Editor of BIRD TALK and BirdChannel.com
Follow in the adventures of Jessica Pineda's experiences in bird ownership in The Parrot Life.
Here is a rough drawing of Hello.
When I’m not working on BIRD TALK, I like to write during my free time, and in an ongoing story that I am writing with my best friend, a parrot has recently made an appearance. It is a blue-and-gold macaw named Hello, for reasons revealed later.
Hello is owned by a boy named Iriko, who bought him cheap and, as shown, doesn’t really know what to do with his new parrot. In this world, set in a different time and place, Iriko and his best friend, Aidan, have no idea what a parrot is (having never seen one before) and promptly do all the wrong things when it comes to owning a parrot. It’s a complete impulse buy. Hello comes in a narrow, circular cage (notoriously bad for parrots) and they are told to feed him crackers and seed.
Luckily, Timeus, Aidan’s guardian, sets them straight on the path to bird ownership and Iriko develops a strong bond with his parrot. Hello gets plenty of out-of-cage time, a healthier diet and tons of handmade toys from his diligent owner. Hello has made other appearances throughout the story, providing comic relief and a good look into his owner, who loves his parrot.
Here are a couple excerpts, starting with Hello’s debut into the story:
“Well, it’s obviously a bird,” Aidan said matter-of-factly, and then his voice trailed off as a confused expression crossed his face, “J-Just don’t know what kind. I mean, what do you do with it?”
“Eat it?” Iriko suggested. Timeus realized they were looking at something that was in between the sofa and lounger. He shifted to peer around when he paused at a soft, gravely but otherwise coherent, voice.
Both boys’ mouths dropped and they turned to regard each other. Aidan was the first to break into a grin and they both chorused, “Coool.”
Timeus shifted over and sure enough, there was a brightly colored bird in a circular metal cage. Its dark eyes flashed at him, its head bobbed and, again, in a gravely voice, it said, “Hello?”
“Hello?” Aidan repeated, leaning in, then the bird’s attention shifted, its head cocking to look at him. “M-My name is Aidan. What’s yours?”
The bird’s eyes flashed again; it seemed to be enjoying itself. “Hello?”
“Hello?” Iriko whispered loudly, his own head tilted like the bird’s. “Suppose that’s its name then?”
“Bloody strange name for a bird, ain’t it?”
“That isn’t its name,” Timeus said and both boys jumped, turning to him as he sighed and sat on his lounger. His eyebrow twitched when he heard something crack; when he looked, he found he had sat on a tray of crackers.
“Oh no! Hello’s dinner!” Iriko cried.
“Aw, he’s upset, Timeus.”
Other appearances made by Hello, who greets all newcomers he sees.
A hallway led to two bedrooms was where Aidan led them to, both pausing when they heard the softest voice whisper, “Hello?”
“God, shut up, Hello,” Aidan muttered, flipping on the light to reveal there was a cage at the end of the hallway. And in the cage was a giant blue-and-yellow bird that stared at them both and then bobbed its head.
“Hello!” it cried.
And that’s Hello! He’s one fun bird and I hope he appears again soon! I also want to write a story exclusively about him, so maybe one day he will appear on this blog again!
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A Boy and His Parrot