I’m a reporter, but I missed, if not the biggest story, at least the most fascinating story of the day Monday. In my own backyard!
I was at work when I got a call from one of my boys home from college.
- “Where’s your camera dad?” “Why?”
- “The fire department’s here.” “Who?”
- “They’re trying to get the bird out of the tree.” “WHAT?”
His name is Simon. One of our neighbors has owned the pet parrot, a macaw, for the past three years. Who knew? None of us did. But Simon became the talk of the neighborhood when he “escaped” his home and flew to, of all places, into a tree in our backyard.
The tree is actually on the golf course, between our wrought iron fence and the 5th tee box, but it’s branches practically hang over our yard. And there sat Simon sitting smugly and defiantly on a branch about 40 feet up.
My two college boys, David and Jacob (the one who called me) became my correspondents. They told me that Simon’s owner couldn’t coax him out of his perch so he called the Broken Arrow Fire Department. That must have been quite a call.
- Dispatcher: “Broken Arrow Fire Department. What’s your emergency?”
- Neighbor: “Well, it’s my bird.”
- Dispatcher: “Your bird?”
- Neighbor: “Yeah, he’s in a tree and won’t come down.”
- Dispatcher: “Let me see if I’ve got this straight. Your bird is stuck up a tree?”
- Neighbor: “I guess that’s right….”
- Dispatcher: “And you want us to get it down?”
- Neighbor: “Well, if you can’t…..”
- Dispatcher: “I’ll send a ladder truck right away!”
Almost quicker than you could say “Polly want a cracker,” they were here. My correspondents tell me the firefighters got their hose out first. “This won’t take long,” they said (or something like that). After a short but strong blast of cold water Simon gave up his comfortable seat on the branch….. and flew to another tree.
One of the firefighters then climbed that tree, grabbed Simon, and shimmied down with the prize. Case closed. Let’s head back to the station and finish our chili. Not so fast.
Our neighbor put Simon on his shoulder, maybe whispered something threatening in his ear like “What until I get you home,” and strutted away. But Simon had tasted freedom and must have liked it. He flew off his owner’s shoulder and onto the roof of another neighbor’s home.
No problem. “We have a ladder for that,” the firefighters might have said. So they scaled the house next door, and one of them courageously crawled on the rooftop to “rescue” the victim.
By now the drama had attracted quite a crowd, including golfers playing in a tournament that afternoon. I’m sure they went home talking about birdies! But a firefighter on the roof was no match for Simon. He flew off to another tree.
At this point, the B.A. Fire Department said they’d had enough of Simon. They took their hose and ladder and truck and went back to the station. Before leaving, one of them told my correspondent: “Ever so often we get a strange call, like saving a cat out of a tree, but never have we ever been called to save a parrot!”
I told you it was a fascinating story. And I missed it.