A bird became more than a pet.
His name is Coco and he is all she has
When we travel, we enjoy meeting people. We arrived at Krimml, Austria on a very wet afternoon. After a long dry, hot summer the week of our journey started with rain all over Europe, actually most of the time it was coming behind us, but this wet afternoon we were in it. Our hotel was on top of the hill, with a beautiful view on Europe’s tallest waterfall. Every room had a balcony with pink flowers. As we enjoyed the view, we heard a bird from the next room. It didn’t sound like a “regular” bird, one you would hear in Europe, more like some exotic bread. Then an elderly woman appeared with a bird cage and a parrot. It was a Grey Congo parrot, Coco was his name. The woman started apologising if we mind the noise, which we didn’t and we started chatting.
Her story is that she is now all alone (apart from the parrot). Her husband died a year ago and he was the one that she was travelling with her whole life. They bought Coco together as a young parrot born in Europe from a certified breeder. When her husband died in his sleep (he was not ill) it was a huge shock for her. We can see and feel her deep sadness. She decided to continue travelling with Coco, like they did together. They traveled with cruise ships in Norway, they travelled with car, train, hiked the Alps etc. She adapted Coco’s cage and added straps so she can carry it on her back.
While we were chatting, Coco was very curious. You can tell there is intelligence in that little head of his. His bright eyes were very observant. Occasionally he would speak. He knows words, but also whole sentences. He speaks German, of course, like his owner. At one point, the neighbours upstairs appeared on their balcony, Coco looked up and told them to get down (Hallo, komm runter). I have it on video here.
The woman has a son, but with sadness she said that he doesn’t care much about her. He is busy, working etc. She really enjoyed the fact that we invested our time to chat with her and to listen to her stories.
People we meet on our travels, always have a story to tell and we love to hear it.
That way at least for a short period of time, they feel that they matter to someone.