When I was growing up, I thought it would be neat to have a pet bird. Everyone else has cats and dogs... I wanted something different. I never fell in love with horses or wished for a cat to purr on my lap. Although, we had several dogs when I was growing up, they were nothing too special. Fish are nice, but floating around in a bowl, going *glub* *glub* all day is not my idea of a fun pet. Snakes are scary... Lizards eat bugs... Chinchillas are mainly nocturnal... Hamsters don't live long... etc. etc. etc.
For a few years, I did not really think about birds. I got busy with school and work. Then I got my own apartment and my mother decided that I needed some company. So she worked out this elaborate plan. With everyone chipping in and the wonder of kijiji, she managed to get a young pair of canaries and two cages for a great price.
Now, I did not know that any of this was happening. I was oblivious until I walked in to my parents house on my birthday two years ago and saw a large box-shaped-something covered with sheets and blankets. On the front was a sign that read, "Happy Birthday Kendra. Don't touch or peek". So I was a good girl and enjoyed my birthday dinner and then it was present time. I uncovered the box-shaped-something and found inside a large bird cage with a piece of paper hanging from the top on which had been printed pictures of canaries. I smiled and thought, "Ok, now I have a cage, I guess I'll have to buy some birds to put in it." Then my youngest sister went to her room and brought out a small cage which held a pair of canaries. :)
It took some time to figure out what I would name my new pets. I could not name them something ordinary like Tweety. That is too unimaginative! I had heard of a hymn writer named Maltbie Babcock and thought that he had a fun name to use for one of them. So the green one (who we later found out was a male) is named: Maltbie. For the yellow one, we decided to turn to a literary source... Jane Austen. I thought it was also a male and wanted to give it a good masculine name. My sister E and I went through the male leads in each of Miss Austen's books. Wentworth? No. Edward Ferrars? No. Darcy? Hmm... No. I did not like any of them. Then we got talking about how Darcy's first name is Fitzwilliam, which appears to be his mother's maiden name. We then set to figure out what Fitzwilliam Darcy and Elizabeth would name their son ... and decided it may be Bennett Darcy. Bennett sounds like a nice name! So the yellow one is named Bennett. Later we found out that this one was a female, but I decided to keep the name as Bennett (or Miss Bennett if you will).
I have enjoyed having the canaries for the last couple years. Sometimes Maltbie drives me crazy with his singing... but most of the time I enjoy it! I moved this past fall and now have a roommate. I warned her about my noisy birds, but she was ok with it and now she sings right along with them.
So the wish of a little girl to have a unique pet has become a source of joy and remembrance of God's creation.
Click HERE to see a video of Maltbie singing. :)
This is my Father's world, and to my listening ears all nature sings, and round me rings the music of the spheres. ...
This is my Father's world, the birds their carols raise, the morning light, the lily white, declare their maker's praise. ...
... This is my Father's world, why should my heart be sad? The Lord is King; let the heavens ring! God reigns; let the earth be glad!