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Every Life is a Story
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Monday, July 7, 2008

Lucky the Bird

My mother got a job when we moved to Junction City, Oregon, and I entered the fifth grade. To help, my grandmother babysat us after school every day. They lived out in the country on what used to be a large farm, but now had a big yard, enough for a fabulous garden, fruit and walnut trees, some swings, and a chicken coup. We had just moved from a farm ourselves, and couldn't keep some of our chickens and rabbits in town. My grandparents happily cleaned out the empty chicken coup for our chickens, and built a hutch for the rabbits. That way we were able to play with the rabbits every day after school, and help feed the chickens.

One day, after my grandmother had picked me up after school, she told me that the strangest thing had happened at her house. She had gone out to the chicken coup to collect the eggs, when she found a parakeet eating the chicken feed! It had apparently been a pet at one time because it had an orange band around its leg. She caught the parakeet, and found a rabbit cage to put it in, and she thought maybe we could keep it as a pet. I was so excited to get to grandma's house and see the bird!

Unfortunately, rabbit cages aren't the best place to keep birds. It had escaped through the wider spaces in the wires. I thought that was it, but we decided to check the chicken coup again just in case- and sure enough, the parakeet had gone back to eating the chicken feed. We caught it again, and put it in a box, then called around to see if anyone we knew had a real bird cage. We found one, and put the bird inside, along with some food, and other necessities. We named him Lucky, because he was so lucky to have been found again.

Lucky was our pet for only a very short time. He had been in the wild too long, and didn't take well to being in a cage again. Not as "lucky" as we had originally thought. The chickens and rabbits didn't last much longer after that either. They were just too hard for my grandparents to take care of.

But for awhile, we were checking that chicken coop every day in case any other escaped pets showed up for a free meal.

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