Rini, short for Tangerine, had orange round spots on his cheeks!
He was as sunshiny and as vibrantly joyous every day of his life as his yellow feathers!
He lifted my spirit through all kinds of transitions, and I still listen for his lilting songs sung just to me...
A true Gift of God, I had rescued this desperate Boy from the bushes in front of my house, having been alerted by strange cries that someone was in trouble.
Finally finding him, he was deep under brush that I crawled into and, clinging to a branch, was calling for help since he was ssurrounded by cats - six of them! Had there not been so many, one might have made a move before then. They, the cats, did not even respond to my pulling them out! They'd go back, so I grabbed the hose and doused the woud-be predators, then gently grabbed this beautiful Cockatiel in my TShirt and brought him inside to a cardboard box where I let him rest and drink water.
Then, rushing out to buy a cage and food, I put a notice in the local pet store for a lost Cockatiel, hoping no one would resond. After all, did they deserve to raise this beautiful birdy Boy if they had let him outside to certain danger?
No one, thankfully, ever called, and we settled in sweetly together - us two, all the dogs, our cats, and this wonderufl newcomer!
Once I'd shown Rini, for I'd named him right away, to his cage I'd just bought with its' toys and his food, he looked around, his big eyes seeming pleased with his stable situation, and dined.
Sunny, my lab-Great Dane mixed Dog, Thor, our rottie rescue and I were in the room beyond the dining room, where I'd placed Rini's cage, and there was a TV in that room which we often had on with old films running.
He stayed peacefully in that room for a couple of days without uttering a word, and then, suddenly, out of nowhere, Sunny and I heard a radio, we thought, coming from inside the house!
Since my significant other was at work, it was shocking!
Then, following Sunny, whose alarm was going off, wondering if he had an intruder to contend with or what, and Thor followed us.
Rounding the corner to the dining room, Sunny turned around completely, his eyes larger than saucers, and stared at me, then back toward the dining room where Rini was!
Rini was talking!!!
Apparently, the TV had said something that interested him and he decided to converse.
His little voice was very like an old-timey radio personality's and he spoke real words!!!
It turned out that he had a rather long routine he would recite and then go into a wolf whistle and a 'Charge' whistle, and so on, starting all with "He's a pretty bird!"....and all enunciated impeccably!
To this day, I have NEVER seen anyone so surprised by anything! Sunny's shock was so compelling and dramatic! He KNEW that birdies and other beings don't talk like humans!
Our household lightened up and joyfied as Rini's voice took over, his made-up songs, and some I have written down with his name as composer, his noises, chirps, and his long monologue that I learned and would recite with him endeared us all!
Birds outside would take up his songs too, and we'd hear his tunes outside sung by our wild birdies!
I awoke in Joy every morning, just hearing his beautiful voice!
But for a few-month period when He waited for us from a trip to help my Brother who was ill and then died...Rini was with us for six years!
Wonderful, song=filled years of joyous communications, sweet noises and godo vibrations that filled our home with Joy!
During that brief sojourn, when he lived in Santa Barbara at a fabuluos mansion with several other rescued Cockatiels, he met a beautifully-demure female named, by us, PiPi, short for Peaches!
Naturally, we adopted her, since she was SO devoted to our hot little guy that I truly have never seen such pure Love shining in anyone else's eyes - it was truly divien - saintly - the way she adored him!
LIttle PiPi, The Most Loving Doll in the World
PiPi, who would ever follow Rini in whatever he did, except for flying, for her wing had been damaged, so that is why she'd lived at the rescue home, so she would toddle after him as he'd fly through our enormous bird room in a huge Moorish-styled mansion that we were blessed to have during this time. Their room had its' own adjoining veranda, so the view was magnificent of surrounding seas and verdant hillsides! He would perch high above on the tall ceiling ledges and little PiPi woulk look up, cherishing every view of her Beloved. Alas, during the trek around the room, our little Doll somehow became entangled in a hair - a sole, long blonde hair of mine, too fine almost to see - and it wrapped around her ankle so tightly and gave no sign of its' existence until we noticed her limping.
By then, the blood had stopped circulating and her tiny right foot had to be treated. Her doctor took off part of her toes and from then on, we had to create special places for her to perch, so she could no longer cling to upper branches of their fabulous habitat their Daddy had built for them, but she enjoyed just being near him, when he'd let her.
The love relationship of Cockatiels is not always loving, and at certain times, Rini could be quite rude in pecking PiPi away from him and in dominating her entirely, although she would remain, as always, devoted completely to loving him.
Sadly, Rini's first love, aside from me, was his mirror.
Before we'd known about PiPi, we'd wanted Rini to be calm and happy, especially when he was new to our household, and we'd been advised that they like mirrors.
Did he ever!
That mirror was constantly looked into, flirted with, crooned to, and danced and postured in front of!
Rini was wholly captivated by his image, like Narcissus, and his real-life girlfriend could only penetrate his heart at times, and then, only partly.
Not sure why this photo won't go vertical! This is PiPi below, watching Rini croon to her rival, the Mirror, but she was never jealous, just innocently loving of him
They reminded me of Hamlet and his adoring paramour, Ophelia, in that his obsessions also took his heart and attention far away from his girlfriend, but thankfully, my little PiPi never seemed affected by his less-than-swainly attitude toward her. Unconditionally loving, her life seemed complete just to have him in her presence, while she studiously avoided even the semblance of having any affection for either of her people - did she fear Rini might think her less than smitten? I think so. Loyal to the end, my precious Girl remained.
Winsome, Soulful Little PiPi
Rini and PiPi as "Parents" to our Puppy Rescue
Parents? To a tiny doggy? A giant-breed baby?
Yes, fate will tell its' own stories in our lives, and thank God for that!
A wildlife and pet rescuer, I got a call about a breeder who'd cast out sixteen tiny newborn Pups onto the shelter system. Newfoundlands. Giant breeds, unlike their fellows, need four full months with Mommy, and their needs for nurturing and training by her are vast, so these two-weeksters were helpless and needy. Only rescuers could promise the time and energy, constant devotion and the tending necessary to rear these babies, so we volunteered.
Seeing one of the two males, whose little weak eyes were trained upon mine, I was entirely owned at one glance, and those who attempted to show me others noticed that my eyes were also riveted upon those of that little Darling's. They understood.
Taking him home in a blankie, we understood that he could not be around other dogs for weeks, since he was too young to get his shots, so he stayed in our bedroom and the Cockatiel Couple always slept in the master bathroom - the warmest room in the house - in the winter, with a night light for further warmth.
During the nights, our little Pup would go into the bathroom to be with his "Parents", Rini and PiPi, who'd adopted him right away. He'd put his little face right up to their cage and they'd talk to him, cooingly, and sweetly speak in tender voices during the night, soothing the newborn. He adored them, of course, and they, him.
During this time, when the Puppy couldn't go outside or elsewhere - and I'm so glad the room was very large, it had a view and glass doors onto a deck outside and a lavish view - for weeks, his little life was much enriched by his interactions with this loving Couple.
He was the Baby they had never had and they were His Parents, nurturing him, being with him while we'd sleep and comforting him. They taught him things, I know, and imparted love and wisdom that those who don't believe that we species communicate with one another can never understand.
It was amazing to see this little black, long-haired Puppy, devotedly listening and being with them, pushing his head toward them, against the cage as they would walk right up to him and speak lovingly!
And he'd lie down next to them and sleep very often during the nights, going back and forth from our bed to theirs! He had a ramp going up to our bed, he was then so tiny, even being a giant breed!
Throughout their lives, their Doggy Son interacted lovingly with them, and when PiPi went to Heaven, he was devastated, asking for her, looking perplexed at me, mourning...
A hurricaine took her life, that is, in the haste to put everyone in a vehicle and to run from the storm that was horrendous and headed right for us, her Daddy did not remove the perches from the cage or put a towel in the bottom, lining it with soft materials, etc. in case of abrupt movements in the vehicle.
Somehow, the little Doll died during the evacuation, either by sudden movements or her little heart - so full of Love for her Prince Charming, gave out. A delicate, ultra-feminine image of Mother Mary, she had had so few physical resources even from the beginning, we think she was probably an older bird whose life-long wish to find Love in the Extreme - was, by us, fulfilled.
At least this gives us consolation.
I miss the most open heart and the most innocent, loving eyes I've ever seen in my life. My PiPi was Love Personified.
Rini on R. and PiPi on L., Art by Ocean
As PiPi was Love Personified, so Rini was Joy Personified.
Although he'd had the tragedies of being lost and almost killed, of setting up in a new family, being evacuated in hurricaines and now, the loss of his Soulmate, Rini appeared to rally.
Rini didn't seem to mourn much, but his time with his mirror did increase. A hyper-type, our Boy must have spent his anxieties and grief on his obsession with the mirror and with his singing.
Joyful by nature, he could not sing the blues, but could only sing sunshiny tunes, and we put more of our energies on making his life enjoyable without PiPi.
Outfitting his area and cage with ever=new toys and activities, he still preferred singing to and with me to everything else, and his voice would resound, ringing thorughout the home!
I wrote this a few years later:
Rini died today.
Early pre-dawn, around three.
I know because I felt him.
I stifled the urge to go downstairs where I’d made sure he had one of his Big Pop’s soft, warm T-shirts to snuggle up on, and when I’d brought it, he’d happily walked onto it.
It kept his little feet from the cold rungs of the bottom of the cage, where he’d had to alight.
For two days, or maybe just one, or maybe four, he’d been, I’d sense, a little different.
Not singing as much.
Not answering back to me.
Not doing his usual things.
It’d attributed it to other causes, and during this time, yesterday morning, Aziza had died.
Our two tiny babies, now dead, less than a full day apart.
The detector said no fumes from the heater.
Was it just the cold?
I now read information that said he would have preferred close to seventy degrees, the way I used to keep it for him, in other houses.
Here, though, in real winter land, the heater is so vociferous that it must be restrained, and I’m not sure if the real temp had fluctuated just that much or not.
I did several insane things, including getting another, private person to see about the possibility of a gas leak.
The massive, old heater was just beneath the breakfast room, the warmest room in the old mansion where we then lived. We always live in huge houses. We have rescued pets and need the space.
With two tiny Babies dead at the same time in the same room, I was panicking.
Using a floor heater or heating pads was risky to keep them warm, but we'd tried that, to no avail.
I’ll never know unless God leads me to the exact right info. I pray He will.
We’ve come here, all of us, to live in the huge mansion, where we all have adequate space, where we can all be in the Cowboy film about one of our rescued Doggies together - one of our projects.
Rini was to play a special part, as was Princess Aziza.
He will always play that special role in my heart.
The silence was almost unbearable this morning.
I’m doused with GABA in order to get through it, in order to quell the crying, the constant instinct to run, to help him, to redo things, to feel the anguish of guilt, to try over and over again.
He’s with PiPi, his love now.
They’re in the freezer in her little mausoleum, side by side, soulmate-wise, the way Big Pop wants us two to be someday.
Someday, and forever.
I thought this morning I want some of each of their feathers – even just a tiny bit – and everyone’s fur, to go along with my brothers’ hair with us when we go to Heaven.
I have things to prepare for, but that’s ok.
We all do.
I have to understand the rules of this game.
I have to find positives.
As I willed myself downstairs this morning and after having paused a long time with the Doggy Rini and Pipi had raised’s mournful big face huddled next to my thigh as I stroked him, he, disconsolate since Rini had been his Little Papa – when we’d just rescued the tiny pup, only two weeks old, the only room warm enough for him and for them was the bathroom next to our bed, and he could stroll through the tiny opening, and would, to lie sometimes with us, sometimes with them on his bed there, right next to their grand cage on the floor.
In the nights we’d take them in there, or rather, Big Pop, their Daddy, would.
The Baby Doggy would stand right next to them, loving them, and they’d all talk together.
Rini and Pipi were his parents. He adored them.
Last night, their Doggy Son, knowing something was wrong with his Rini, went in to him, stood by his cage, longingly, kissing toward him, and sniffing.
He’s seen enough of death, and he always sniffs all of us to make sure we’re all ok, every day.
He’s the caretaker, the Shepherd of us all. The Newfoundland Foundling...
He’s been morose since then, and now is more depressed than I’ve seen him since his big bro, Thor, died.
rem- his own long song, etc. that i'd do with him!
rem - his compositions! i still ahve his songwriting!
he'd chime in with me whenever!
rem - their having raised UU!
Birds are most Blessed by God. Their devotion to Him is seen in every town, every city, every morning and evening, when the winged beings, so like angels, assemble where they can see the Sunshine rising and falling on their precious days. Their preciious voices create in life a joy, a beauty, that we can't really appreciate until we wander through a birdless, treeless scape. Then we see how much birds enrich our lives.
That special energy, that vivid happiness, the bold connection with God, with Life, with Joy, belongs exclusively, to birds.
We were so blessed to be allowed to take care of our winged Darlings, even if for too few years.
Years they had carried me through with their beauty, with their soulfulness, with their joyousness that could not be denied, even by one immersed in grief...many things had happened in the people world that we made sure never affected our pets, but they know...and they work harder to lift our spirits.
I'm so grateful to them! Angels on earth!
There was, in fact, a gas leak in that old house, in an interior basement area where the oldest plumbing had been, and an even older heater.
Somewhere in time, it had been snipped, but never truly disconnected, and so it bled out the slow poison that killed my Babies that winter. It wasn't found until we found another of the three we'd hired, beyoond the utilities people, to investigate, who, with us watching, crawled through an underground crevace to find traces of long ago. The house had once, in 1913, been gas-lit, and gas pipes still remained..
How many had it killed before we'd finally found it?
We'll never know, since the history of the old house is so vast, but I know of some - my Loved Ones.
We must trust God in His largest view of life, and realize that for some reason, they were - all those who go to Heaven - spared something worse in life.
They had an easy death, just feeling more and more dizzy, sleepy, until finally succumbing.
The last look Rini had given me I cherish. It was so clear in his communication that he'd be going, and that it was OK, that we'd always be together. To keep His JOY alive.
At least, due to us, Rini was able to fly freely throughout huge rooms, to have lovely views, tons and tons of LOVE and safety, plus his Soulmate...I know he was happy.
After Rini had died, that day, I went mournfully, dragged myself to the back door where I scanned the sky. It was early morn. He'd died around three a.m., and I heard, what? RINI?
I heard his song - his signature, main tune - being sung outside by the birdies he'd taught!
I realize that he, living next to the window, must have conversed often with the outside birdies, and they had leanred his song!
It was a blessing of God, of coruse, to hear that song, and to realize that we all touch others, we all give to others, we all enrich others during the course of our lives.
I hope they hand down his songs, but either way, sound waves NEVER dissipate - they go on, intact, through the univesrse forever and ever, and Rini's voice, his Joyfulness, and his vibrancy are always going to be alive, somewhere in space....and in HEAVEN!
his sad demise, but the lsat, beautiful, joyous, loving look and then nodding out, seming to say, 'we'll always be togehte - yu and i - no need ever to cry! look for me, hear my voice, we'll always be together her eand then in Heaven!' God loves us!
I REM LAVISH MOONS, THE WAVES LAPING IN LIGHTED SHEETS LIKE SILVER...THOR'S BEAUTIFUL FACE, TRANSCENDANT WITH BLISS.....
THE ABOVE TWO PARTS ADED MAY 26, 2010,
THOR'S BEEN IN HEAVEN FOR THREE LONG YEARS...AND NOW PEEP, FOR ALMOST ONE...AND BABY THING - UNTHINKABLE! AND LITTLE CLOUD...AND OUR LITTLE SMALL BABIES, RINI, MOUSE BOY, WHITEY, AZIZA, PANDORA, AND SUNSHINE...TOO
REM LAST NIGHT, THE MISTED MOON, GOLDEN, ENSHROUDED IN GOLDEN MESH, THE AIR SO THICK WITH WARM, SWIRILING CURRENTS OF MOIST SEA AIR THAT THOR AND I FELT WE WERE SWIMMING ALONG THE STREET- CARRIED ,HOISTED HIGH ON THE CARRENING LILTS OF THE THICKEST CHORUSES OF FROGGIES I'VE EVER HEARD, SURROUNDING BY THEIR CASCADING ROUNDS, THEIR JOYOUS VOICES, WORSHIPPING THE GOD OF RAIN AND WATER AND OCEAN AIR, RESOUNDING IN THEIR NIGHTTIME LUSTS, THEIR TERRITORIAL SPELNEDOURS, THE SHEER SENSUAL PLEASURE THEY TAKE IN LETTING THEIR VOICES SPILL THROUGH THEIR ELONGAGTED THROATS- I RESISTED THE URGE TO DISROBE AND TO GLIDE THROUGHT HE EMPTY, BLACKENED STREETS, ALONE UNDER THE LAPIS LAZULI SKY LADEN WITH HEAVY, WHITE STARS AND HUNG WITH RAIN-SODDEN AND DRUNKENLY LAZY ,FAT CLOUDS, TOO LANGUID TO CLIMB HIGH IN THE SKY, LYING ABOUT LIKE OVERSTUFFED ROMANS AFTER A FEAST, LETTING THE MOON ,TRAPPED IN THE GAUZY GOLDEN MIST AS A GORGEOUS GOLDEN CYCLE OF A FISH CAUGHT IN A NET- ANA AMAZINGLY ALIVCE NIGHT- A NIGHT SO FULL OF MAGIC AND SEX THAT I AFTERWARD CLIMBED THE THREE STAIRWAYS UP TO MY SLEEPING BEAUTY OF A HUSBAND, AND PULLED THE SHEET OFF HIM, AS A SCRIM OFF THE MOON, AND ,UNVEILING HIS BODY, TOUCHED HIM AND THEN SLID UNDERNEATH AS HE HUNGRILY RAVAGED ME- A VERY HEADY EVENING, FULL OF LIFE- THE FULLEST OF SUMMER NIGHTS..