One of the first pets I remember, was a little blue budgie called Mickey Blue Boy. My Mum taught him to say "You'll be late, you'll miss the bus" and that always hurried us up in the morning, with a smile.
My Dad brought home a beautiful Amazon Green parrot one day, and tried to teach it to talk. Well, it must have come from a farmyard because all it did was quack like a duck, and so it had to go.
Next came an African Grey parrot. Less spectacular to look at but a brilliant mimic. We had a lot of fun with him,(or her), we called it Polly.
Polly imitated my Dad perfectly. She would say whole gobbledy gook sentences which ended with the name of a family member. She imitated the whistle used to call Napoleon ,and he would eagerly rush in, then when he realised it was the parrot, bark at it furiously, then walk out looking embarrassed.
Whenever my Dad put the parrot seed in the trough it made sneeze violently, "WAA! HOO!",
it wasn't long before Polly repeated that too.
Sometimes, when my Mum had a friend round they would say "oh, I'll just go and say hello to Douglas", only to hear my Mum giggle, "That's the parrot talking away in the kitchen".
Polly was extremely messy and one day she went off on a permanent loan to a family that adored her and had more room in their kitchen!.
Some time later my Dad got the sweetest little parrot called Alfie. He was so tame he walked happily around the house screeching out "Alfie!!".
My Dad also had pheasants and partridges. He took great delight in them. One day he brought an egg that had just been broken and we watched the baby chick coming out- while we were in bed !.