I have a love-hate relationship with pigeons, depends on which part of my life I am speaking about, I should really call it a love-tolerate-hate relationship.
The Love (1) - As a child, my brothers all older than i am loved to take care of pigeons, they were homing pigeons i suppose and they would actually race them, not sure how that was arranged, you know if they would have the sky markers for the 100m or whatever because i was about six or seven years old at the height of the pigeon racing era of my brothers. I loved them because they were contained, and actually I thought them to cute, and the excitement felt by my brothers and their friends over their pigeons was definitely contagious.
The Love (2) As an adult already married and a mom of one (Isaiah) my father developed Alzheimer's, he was a businessman all his life and always on the go, but with the onset of Alzheimer's he stayed at home with my mom who took excellent care of him. there were about three or four pigeons that would sit on the electricity line outside my parents' home and my dad would throw his leftovers for them. Well apparently pigeons can smell a meal ticket a mile away, because the numbers grew and soon it was no longer leftovers my parents were actually preparing rice to throw at the pigeons on a daily basis!! the number of pigeons that would show up for lunch went from three or four, to twenty to well over a hundred! It was truly an amazing sight to see my dad feeding the pigeons then, because the Alzheimer's was progressing and he was beginning to forget the names of some of his 12 children, but he always remembered to feed those birds every day. School children gathered from the neighbourhood primary (elementary) school excitedly on their lunch break to observe the daily gathering of the pigeons. It gave my dad so much joy to see the kids enjoy the 'show'.
The Tolerance - I was very close to my due date of my pregnancy with Isaiah, apparently I have a very comfy uterus because my due date came and went and Isaiah did not budge! So I again visited the hospital this time with bag and baggage as we say in Trini, with out even a hint of pain and declared I was not leaving until the kid is out because i was fed up of being pregnant! Heck i was two weeks over my due date!! So the doctor on duty decided to give me a bed and I can wait for my contractions there, I was just happy not to go back home again still pregnant. So my bed was close to the window and I was on the 6th floor or so and i could see the roofs of other hospital buildings around, of course all old government buildings in the Caribbean has pigeons in the roofs and the buildings i could see were no exception. The one night of observation and waiting for contractions turned to two and stretched eventually to 12! by the third day I was bored out of my skull and before i knew it i was staring at the pigeons and became really fascinated with them. I started naming them, there was Marty, and Beatrice, they were married and had two kids. Another pigeon couple was Delores and Peter, they were newlyweds and lived downstairs of Marty and Beatrice, I had sooo much fun after that because they became a soap opera for me, complete with conversations, depending on how they flew away from the building I would know if they flew away in anger or just to go to the supermarket.
When my sisters visited me I told them about the pigeons and the drama in their lives, but somehow they just did not get it. In fact they looked kind of worried. But those pigeons got me through a super long pregnancy and 12 boooring days waiting for the pain of contractions which never came but that's a whole other blog.
The hate - Well no major hate story but lets face it. they are rats with wings!!