Mr. and Mrs. White both visited our yard most mornings for at least a few months. They usually stood together on the roof, as they waited for me to put out the food, and then flew together to the feeding station atop a pole in our yard.
We have breakfast with them every morning we are home.
Of course if I can determine who is who among the many birds who come, so can the hawk/ falcon, or whoever it was , who ate Mrs. White. I am still struck by seeing her feathers on the ground,,,and wondering, hoping that there were other birds with that many white feathers. However, since I have not seen her again, I am rather sad and certain that Mrs. White will not return to the feeder with Mr. White.
I have friends and colleagues who “hate” pigeons; I love them, especially Mr. White. Now that Mrs. White is gone, he not only comes every morning, some times before the others, but he often comes back again at the end of the day just to see if perhaps there is some food. He not only comes to see, he comes to the feeder and then turns around and looks at me standing in the window.
There is something rebellious about loving a creature that other people hate. He is a bit smaller than the other birds, and gets in more than his share of pecking duels. Still, he continues to come every day.
I realize, especially when he is here by himself, that leaving our birds is one of the most difficult parts of moving.
Yes, I have already found new animal loves at Coles Road — the frog, the four ant hills and the swearing Precept squirrel– but these birds have been part of my life since my parents died and I started feeding anything that could stay alive.
Of course, they will stay alive without me and the small bit of seed that I give them each morning; but now that Mr. White and his colleagues are intimates of mine, I cannot see any pigeon, without thinking of the ones I love. And I do my best not to blurt out something shocked when people tell me how much they hate them and how glad to have been able to dumb a nest of live eggs into the garbage.
Thanks be to God for Mr. White. Each day that you come, I enjoy your beauty and the way you look at me standing in the window.
This post reminds me of my old friend Gorby, short for Mr. Gorbachev, a seagull with a big red bald spot on his head who used to visit me every morning around breakfast time. Needless to say, I’d walk out onto my balcony and give him something exciting, he’d eat, hang around for about half an hour watching the lovely view of Lake Union, then move on to the next stop in his daily routine.