Birds of Peace

Birds of Peace
Kabutar ja ja ja”….. No, there is nothing remotely romantic here. It was my last resort, my ultimate plea to these ‘humming’ birds to leave me and my home alone.
 
 
Don’t know why we have so many pigeons in our area. Probably that noble soul in the opposite building, who daily insists on spreading a parapet full of grains especially for these birds, is responsible for this. Only if that bird lover had a pair, just a pair, of them residing in his loft…… I’m sure he would never have thought of feeding even a single grain again.
 
 
I can’t decide from where to start the pigeon saga, so many are their antics. For some reason best known to them, they have decided to make our loft their home. The way to their abode goes from the balcony via my kitchen then passage and atop the loft. And they use this way as their privilege, rather right, and whoever illegal occupant (like for example, me) dare to stand in their way, better do so at their own risk; the pigeons wouldn’t be responsible for any scratching, wing-slaps or …ugh… any other dirty consequences. Nowadays they have become so bold, that if I don’t bend – rather bow in respect – in time for their arrival, they don’t hesitate clawing my head as a punishment.
 
 
And will somebody please give me the address of a bird-trainer (as in dog-trainer), who would give at least some toilet training to these birds of peace? I feel like doing them in pieces every time I inadvertently step into the designs they so lovingly decorate my floor with. (Well, before the animal-lovers stage a morcha on my house, let me explain that this just an impotent frustration finding its way through words; otherwise I am the type to wait even before killing a cockroach, offering it a chance to escape) 
 
 
Whoever says they are birds of love, should watch them fight. (They actually draw blood, I can vouch for it). Here, the fight was for the prime spot in what I once considered as my home. There are two pairs – or it is one popular lady and her three suitors? – and the way they all fight with each other! So much are they charged with the spirit that they wouldn’t even bother to stop when all my kitchen items come crashing down. Alarmed with the noise, if I rush to the kitchen, they calmly cock their necks and stare back at me – a doubt about my mental health clearly evident in their eyes.
 
 
If these pigeons find some pails of water left open in the kitchen, their merriment knows no bounds. They frolic around happily in the water as though those were their personal designer bath tubs. The water spilled all over the floor is, of course, none of their business, but solely my concern.
 
 
Earlier our area was notorious for crimes like house-breaking etc. So when a little nephew came to stay with us for holidays, he was always cautious. One day while playing, he suddenly stopped and slowly started sidling near me. When I asked him what the matter was, the frightened child replied that he could hear someone moving in the kitchen. “Oh, don’t worry, those are just pigeons.” With my earlier similar experiences I assured him confidently.
 
More than once my quiet afternoons had been disturbed by some nefarious activities in the kitchen and expecting the worst, when I cautiously stalked towards the kitchen with whatever weapon that was handy, those round, red eyes coolly stared back at me as if I had gone mad.
 
 
So I am not bothered anymore. I hope that this overconfidence wouldn’t land me in soup someday. Otherwise, God forbid, when someone really comes to take inventory of my home, I’d calmly continue with my siesta, taking them as my dear friends, pigeons.
 
 
Then some relatives arrived from the Land of Opportunity. They had naturally heard about all the diseases and epidemics in India. So when their six years old son saw the pigeon traffic, he exclaimed, “Oh my God! Now I’ll get bird flu! Oh, I’m going to die!” The parents of the boy were more embarrassed than us, by the situation. I tried to resolve his worries by pointing out that we were still alive, even after living with the birds for so long. I only hope that he did not carry some funny notions back with him.
 
 
Now wait, something – or someone – is there in the kitchen. I have to go and make sure that nobody is collecting my labor of love, but it’s only the birds of love spreading peace, love, — and my kitchen equipment — around!

 

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