So, you may recall my two delinquent cocatiels BoBo and BiBi? I rescued them and brought them back to health. And in return they: ate my art work and crapped all over it. They refused to ever return to their cage and BoBo developed several very strange kinks Mainly involving blue velvet. Instead of setting up home in their nesting box, BiBi laid her eggs in my ceramic bowls and in my packing crates… But I loved them!
In the end I realized that I could never tame them; I lacked the will, and also the conviction. What is wrong with wild? Except, they ate my work. And they were not very nice to visitors. In fact, some of my regular students refused to come to my workshops while they were being shouted at from the top of the curtain rail. They said they found it hard to concentrate.
A friend of mine contacted a Scottish Cocatiel breeder, Mairi, who read my blog posts and decided to do a mercy dash all the way from Clydebank! Together with her husband she packed their car full of lobsters, crabs, langoustines, baby cocatiels and Bobby, their tame pink parrot, who was brought along for moral support.
And they drove through the day and they drove through the night…arriving in Hastings late Saturday evening.
To execute the swap. My wild, beautiful birds in exchange for two hand reared babies with impeccable manners… So in the middle of the night, I suddenly have these two strange baby ‘tiels being affectionate all over me and my radishes. Tame as anything. I took Jeff and Mairi up to meet BoBo and BiBi. They were roosting on a ceramic torso, looking down, blinking sleepily …at Mairi, Bobby and one of the exchange ‘tiels, Jem. We spent the next day getting very, er, happy! on endless bottles of fizz… trying to get the cooking thing into some sort of continuous order. Mairi cooked a fab lobster thermidor and I remember fixing some luscious scallops in saffron, but in the end, we just kind of gave up …and it was a free-for-all. Except BoBo and BiBI who were still in my studio, eating art work.
The really sad thing is. On the Sunday, as I was stood in my studio, all festooned with the exchange ‘tiels, BoBo swoops down …and he lands on my hand. All these months of loving him, tiptoeing around his fears and peculiarities and then, finally, giving up and realizing someone else needs to sort him out – and the damn bird lands on my hand! And then he walks up my arm and on to my shoulder where he proceeds to beat up Josh, the usurper!
I naturally burst out crying. But the deal was struck, the lobster eaten and the fizz a distant headache.
So there we are. I now have the task of trying to learn to love what is tame, what sits on my shoulders and nibbles my ears. When my heart really yearns for the wild, swaggering, foul tempered, beautiful BoBo. Isn’t there a certain irony lurking in this tale?