My Dear Baby


When I was a kid, dad used to keep birds for amusement.

Leiothrix was his favourite. Apart from buying from the stores, he would also look for newly made nests in the neighbourhood. When the baby bird had reached a certain ¡§age¡¨, he would sneak it from the nest while its parents were away collecting food.

Yes, it was cruel to separate the parents and the baby like that, but contrary to feeling sorry for it, I felt big raising a baby bird, like I was raising a human baby. And the baby bird showed attachment to us as human babies show their mothers. It moved toward us while we were observing it with our faces close to the cage. At the sight of the feeding spatula, it would stretch its neck and ¡§cry¡¨ to express its yearning for food. When the meal was over, I would stroke its little neck with my index finger, and it would reward me with half-closed eyes and a ¡§dreamy expression¡¨. We used to bathe it in a bathing cage with a little pool inside. It enjoyed being in the water so much that we had to hurry it back to its own cage. Every day with it was so enjoyable and rewarding.

Unlike human children, pets won¡¦t break your heart unless they die. Pets are much less troublesome. Perhaps that¡¦s why some people have pets instead of children.