Thursday, 25 February 2010

A peahen named Roy, part II

So after the weekend is over I called a forest department personnel and explained him everything. He said that he will come and take the bird with him. I am sad, really sad. Two days with the bird is enough for me to form an affectionate bonding. Two days later the forest department personnel came. He didn’t seem to have any real concern for the bird from his looks and talks. He asked me ‘enga irukuma’? (Where is the bird?). I showed him my little bird. He looked at me in a very confused way and asked are you sure it’s a peachick? I am astonished by this question from him. I told him that I am 100% sure. His eyes looked at the bird one more time and then he turned to me and said ‘this bird is very small, it won’t live long’. ( Oh!!! How much I hated that person and his words). I looked at him pathetically. He mentioned few golden words. ‘ KEEP IT YOURSELF’, I can’t take it with me. I tried to hide my joy and asked whether we need a license? He said let us see if it is alive and left the place. I looked again at the poor creature.It looked happily at me without any tinge of fear. So this is how our Roy came to live in our family.

Nothing happened as the forest department personnel said. Our peachick started growing day by day. Within a month it is big enough to chase our cats. It loved to eat whatever we ate. Chappathis, idly with coconut chutney, sugar were some of her favourites. It would also visit our backyard and gulp down insects and tender parts of plants. It’s most favourite snack was raw onions. It can’t even wait untill my mom cut the onions into small pieces. Like a small child it will be eagerly waiting for it. If you say ‘Roy poochi, poochi’ it comes running from wherever it is. My mom is it's most favourite person in our home. It tolerated most people very well. It never troubled young children. But it had hatred for two people. One my grandpa and the next is our servant-maid. I should mention that both the above persons hated animals. My guess is they must have troubled our Roy in someway or the other. When our homemaid takes the broom stick for sweeping the home our Roy would stretch its wings, raise it small tail and run after her (like how she appears in the second picture). Panchu (homemaid's name)  immediately becomes panicked and will shout ‘amma parungamma’ (mother come and see). My mom have to pacify our Roy and remove it from that place. My dad christened it as Roy. It also shared a special bonding with my dad. Their favourite pass time was to sit outside our home on the steps, with Roy sitting on his lap. Roy used to get itching near it's neck region during summer. My dad used to apply nycil powder on her neck. Thats a wonderful scene to see ofcourse. Roy will be eagerly showing her neck to my dad. It also guarded our home. No strangers are allowed inside home. When any outsider come they are stopped by our Roy before they enter the front hall. Many people are familiar with a dog guarding the house but seeing our Roy guarding our home is a kind of huge surprise for them. In the evening slowly she started to roam around in our community. She would fly to the nearby houses. She will sit on their compound wall and stare around. Everybody liked her. Many people were very happy if our Roy visited their home. In Hindu mythology, Lord Muruga used peacock as his vehicle. So they considered the bird as pious too. Children too used to chat with our Roy (The first picture shows a neighbouring girl talking something to her, my dad clicked it without her knowledge). Our Roy will be sitting among them without any fear. We are eagerly waiting for our peachick to grow into a beautiful peacock with colourful, long tail. When she grew we understood that she is a female. We are happy with her whether she is a beautiful peacock or less attractve peahen. She is afterall our Roy!!!

One day she went out on her routine flight and never came back. Everyone in my home was totally heart-broken. My mom even cried. Many young lads who live around our home were sent in search for her in all directions. But there was no news of her. Then came my servant-maid with a clue. Some person has told her that he sighted a peacock some 1 km away. My mom and the sevant-maid hired an auto and went to that particular place where she was sighted. There she was on top of a window sill, sitting very sad and tired. My mom's joy knew no bound. She started calling her ‘Roy, Roy’. Soon a small crowd gathered around smiling and talking among themselves around my mom. But Roy was more afraid of the crowd . She stood still in the same place. An idea flashed in my moms mind. She bent down touched the ground and said ‘Roy poochi, poochi’. Like a small child running towards her mom she came flying and running towards her. So all three of them came back home in the auto. She looked so weak and tired. It has been two days since she got lost. Her legs had some thread tied to it. We suspected that someone caught hold of her and tied her so that she can’t run away. But she somehow escaped and lost her way home. Immediately after arriving home she drank water and ate some sugar. After this incident she is much more careful. She tried to be indoor and safe most of the time.

She was with us for 2 and a half years. But one fine day she departed us and flew away. The main reason behind this is her age. She attained reproductive maturity. Her reproductive instincts were much stronger than the affection that she had for us. During that period she became very restless. She started to keenly hear the mating calls given by peacocks from the nearby fields. When she heard those sound she became very restless and started walking to and fro with some kind of agitation. When she saw her own reflection on the polished surface of the refigerator she started to peep back of the refrigerator to see whether some of her own species was there. And one fine day she took her flight for good and never to return back. Almost a year later she gave ‘dharshan’ to my dad and mom near my home. When my dad was brushing his teeth in the morning he suddenly noticed her sitting on top of a haystack near our home. My mom and dad shouted Roy, Roy come here, even they tried the ‘poochi technique’, but she just flew back again just to give them one last glance of her. She must have visited to show that she is well and to see whether we are well too. The last one year I am not at home. I am in Germany. So lost the opportunity to enjoy her companionship. But still I become very emotional when I think of her. Good bye friend hope your are doing well with your kith and kin.


  1. Nice memories..I am sure,Roy will be doing good with her family!
    Different and memorable experience manju!

  2. Manju, My heart was touched with your story. It took me back to my childhood when I had pet. Very nicely narrated.