The Loss of a Pet Friend

The morning of July 21, 2012 began a bit later than usual but in many ways was ordinary as I was awakened by my English Budgie about ten minutes before eight.  He suffered from epilepsy and was having a seizure as he did sometimes so I brought him to our kitchen in his “kitty cube” and gave him a little rub behind his head and he immediately calmed down, while I prepared his medication and cleaned his water dish.  As he was ten years old this was a fairly routine happening a few times each month and so I thought not much as I peered back into his cube holding his eye dropper with medicine.

However when I picked him up, instead of his usual “hey what are you doing” routine, he was very limp and did not move.  I simply stood quietly and laid him back down in his cube to see if he would rustle around or show signs of being uncomfortable.  The stillness and absolute quiet filled the air and I reached in again to give him another little rub but his head just rolled to the side.

I went to the sink and made coffee, then opened the doors to the house to let in the new sunshine and a breeze, and then I went back to the table to peer inside his cube once more hoping for a different result.  After waiting and hoping for a while, his body became stiff and I knew for certain his time had come to go to the land of endless seeds.

For ten years he was my constant companion through the loss of a parent, aunts and uncles, cousins and friends.  He loved to ride in the car on a rope perch tucked under the passenger side headrest, and he traveled on airplanes in the cabin with me and was always a rock star going through airport security.  He went to Canada to a Rotary District Conference and was allowed to be in our room at Rotary PETS in New Hampshire.  He rode in a bicycle basket in Hilton Head and even made multiple trips to many states.

He most loved the washing machine, dryer, kitchen sink, dishwasher, and vacuum cleaner sounds, and he enjoyed Queen, ACDC, and Paul Simon.  He would beg to go into the shower with me and would chill out in the water.

But it is when I am working from home he is missed the most.  We would both look forward to my coming into the living area and if I played any music he would start chirping.  If the house was quiet he would chirp, to find me, and if I did not respond he would often jump down to the floor and walk down the hall to my office for attention.

The house is quiet now and this morning when I played some background music I unconsciously got up and went to where his cage was located when I heard no response from him.  The table was bare as no cage (home) was there, and I looked at the empty table and bare wall, and quickly wondered where I put the credit cards he had received (in his name but not activated), and then I turned away to sit and write this farewell to a friend.  I know he thought of me as a giant head that provided seed and water, but my little buddy was always there with a chirp, filled with optimism and curiosity, and always wanting to step onto my finger and climb up my arm to preen my hair.  RIP my little friend.

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