In The Bird’s Paradise



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I  am at my Mother’s place and we are 3 Senior Citizens  in deep discussion about 4 birds namely The Parrot, The Crow, The Sparrow and The Pigeon. I am 60+, Maid is 70 + and Mother is 80 +.

Mother complaints, she is fed up of the cunning Crow. The Maid says, we have to feed the Crow as this offering will reach our ancestors. The Maid is in charge of the kitchen. She gets the  grocery and vegetables and even decides the menu as well as cooks the lunch, dinner and snacks. The cleaning and top work is handled by 40 + Maid who also doubles up as an assistant to the 70+ Maid. Mother doesn’t mind as long as she gets a wholesome food on her table and therefore she hardly looks into the kitchen.

Thus the 2 Maids and Mother lead a peaceful life, each in her own space. The differences come up only when the discussion starts on the birds,  which is at least twice a day and today I am also part of it.

As soon as the lunch is cooked, the 70+ Maid, puts one of each food item on the space outside the window grill for the Crow. The Crow is already waiting for his food and if the Maid is little late in serving him, he starts croaking despite the fact that she talks to him and tells him, wait I am coming. The 40 + Maid serves the food to the  Crow again ( she is just performing her own duty towards her ancestors ) in similar fashion before she goes home in the late afternoon. Mother complaints to me that why are they serving the cunning Crow twice? He doesn’t deserve because he croaks and disturbs my sleep as well as scares away my Parrots when they come  to eat the seeds kept for them in the balcony. The Maids hear but pretend that they are deaf.

Now it is evening and Mother and me are in the balcony. Two Parrots come and Mother is smiling. She explains me in detail on how the Parrots eat the seeds so systematically without clashing with each other. She says, the Parrots don’t mind the Sparrows sharing their seeds but they don’t like the Pigeons disturbing them and the Crow scares them away, despite the fact that due to his long beak, he cannot even eat the seeds and has already had two servings, one from each of the two Maids. She says that she keeps water in the bowl which the Crow drinks many times in a day and he also feeds his baby, drop by drop in his mouth, despite the fact that the baby can drink by himself. I tell her ‘ mummy, the Crow is just pampering his baby by feeding him drop by drop.’ Mother further says that the only good thing about the Crow is that every time  he comes to drink water, she remembers to drink water, as the Doctor has told her to drink lots of water.  She says, Parrots just come to the balcony to eat but they don’t drink water at all. I am amazed at her knowledge of the birds and like a child, I want to hear more stories from her. Then she calls the 70 + Maid to bring a guava which is a treat for the Parrots, and the Maid cuts the guava in half and keeps in the balcony. She tells me, now watch how the Parrots eat so systematically.

I am ready with my i phone waiting anxiously for the Parrot. Just then the Parrot comes and slowly picks up the half guava and flies away to the nearby tree and positions himself, balancing his treat, then starts carving neatly and eating the piece  systematically till the end and lets go the last bit. I am watching through my i phone lens and simultaneously,  clicking the photos in sequence. As the Parrot lets go the last bit, I face my mother and show her the clicked images of the Parrot in sequence and Mother smiles and says, I already told you that the Parrots eat very systematically .

Then I call the Maid to join us and place my i phone on her palm, teach her how to see the photo slides of the Parrot eating his treat and observe her reactions. She is fascinated and delighted with the marvel and clarity of the digital photos of the Parrot’s activity that cannot be otherwise seen so clearly with own eyes.

All 3 of us are now no more Senior Citizens but just Young at 60+, giggling away, free like birds, in the Birds’ Paradise, oblivious of the Human World and with a Bird’s eye view, the Birds are watching us from the Tree.

Thank you Mother for introducing me to the Bird’s Paradise.

Kirti Mulani

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