Sally Blanchard Paco

Paco and Moments of Reverie about Our Youth Together

Today I was standing in front of Paco's cage. She was on top of the cage ripping apart a small cardboard box. I had several minutes of reverie as I thought back 44 years when I first met her as a mostly blob of silly putty with dark eyes, yet unopened as she hatched from her egg. The breeders were friends and called me to tell me Paco was hatching so I rushed over to witness her sort of falling out of her eggshell. Then, I remembered her as a mostly unfeathered baby with bright eyes when she waddled over to me the first time to get my attention which she already had completely. They believed in socialization and a healthy fresh food diet. The only mistake they made was that they thought she was a boy and named and called her Paco. She said her name at a very young age and seemed to love it so I couldn't change it. I helped wean her and took her home when she fully weaned and had all of her feathers. They shined like they were made of velvet. The first few days I treated her as if she was very fragile and then within the week we started to play and I taught the little learning sponge so much. I took her everywhere that she was welcome. I introduced her to friends and neighbors and she loved to meet people and still does and has always laughed a lot if we are talking.

Of course, we were both a lot younger then and both of us had a lot more energy. We don't have the same relationship that we did back then but it is still a good one. She used to be a lot more cuddly but now it is on her terms and she seems to allow less and less of it. I think maybe she is starting to get a little arthritis that bothers her. She naps a lot during the day. She certainly isn't as curious as she was when she was younger but I still try to encourage her. She still tells me goodbye when I leave and says, "Hi Sawee" when I come home. She talks at other times too but not as much as she used to. She is right outside my office door during the day I can talk and sing to her but at night when I am up late working, I can shut the door so she can sleep.

I never imagined when she came to live with me that we would actually grow old together but here we still are together.


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