My living room is occupied, at least half way, by 15 cockatiels, 2 sun conures, an orange front conure, and an Indian ringneck parakeet. They are our early warning system. They announce the postal worker, the UPS driver, guests, Girl Scouts, the landlord, and those religious folks.
They also keep us informed as to the movements of all neighborhood cats, flocks of crows, the odd hawk (real or imagined), and mocking birds. We rarely get dogs running through the streets here, but there are good people who walk their dogs down our streets. The birds seem to know this is not a threat, and don’t get too excited about it.
When I was working, Sunny could hear my specific car turn the corner a couple blocks away. Once she started up, everyone joined in. Even Maynard, who resides a few rooms back from the living room, began to associate her alarm call at a certain time of the day with my arrival. He shouts “Mama!” until I come in and actually assure him I am home for the day. Well, he used to. I am rarely gone from the house for more than a few hours.
The birds also know when Mike is a few blocks away, and greet his impending arrival in the same way. The problem is, sometimes they seem to be just thinking about “Dad” coming home soon, and start to squawk. This leads to my getting up from my writing desk, walking to the living room, opening the front door, letting in the cat accidentally, closing the door on the empty driveway, chasing the cat down, and putting her out in the back yard.
A couple minutes later, the act repeats. Finally, Mike does pull into the driveway, and the cat makes her final dash into the house. The birds rejoice, and I just bet they are congratulating themselves on being right as always. Darn fibbers.
Recently, a new cat has adopted us as a late afternoon feeding station. Our cat, Oreo, does not need a backup cat, thank you very much. The new cat, Gypsy, has learned to stop playing with the doves, but the button quail are still very enticing. She won’t go into the shed at night with Oreo, probably a good thing for a cat who wants to keep all her fur and limbs. And ears. So after Oreo is safely locked in for the evening, Gypsy gets a scoop of dry food and a few good scratches.
Now the living room birds just need to learn that Gypsy loves to jump at the window, but she can’t get at them. And to stop sending out those false alarms. Thanks for reading, I will be back on Thursday.