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It all started in Michigan where our neighbors gave us Tuttu. They were going on vacation and after they came back they said we can keep Tuttu with us. Our children were delighted. Tuttu became the delight of our eyes. His chirping and playful attitude made us all lively. My wife decided to bring his partner. She searched and found Tutti, complete yellow with beautiful eyes and delicate body. Soon they were playing together. We always let them roam freely. Tuttu liked to play a lot and wherever he flew he chirped and tried to call Tutti. She was first reluctant as her feathers were cut but soon she started to follow her. Then came the end of school year for my kids and we were moving to Illinois. I packed everything up and placed Tutti and Tuttu in our front seat next to us and started for our new home. The journey was good and we saw Tuttu and Tutti enjoying and feeding inspite of sound and 5 hour journey.

We placed them in the kitchen and slept after a tireless night. Next morning my daughter placed them outside for fresh air as it was a sunny day. Then the most unexpected happened. The door was ajar and Tutti flew away. It was surprising for her to fly that far as Tutti was not good at that due to her short feathers. Before my daughter tried frantically to catch her she was already in treetop in our west side neighbor's garden. I could see her up in the branches in full view of us. I had to go to the Train station to pick up my small daughter and wife from the train station. When I mentioned to my small daughter , she wept and didn't stop. She loved her so much. I tried to console her that we will try to bring her back. After I came back there was no sign of Tutti. We took our binoculars out and searched all the treetops. There was no sign of Tutti. Then I called the pet shop in the neighborhood and they advised me to call the firefighters. A big truck came to my house and the three firefighters came well equipped to climb the trees. They tried to locate Tutti. They could not find her either. My little daughter cried a lot. Night came and my daughter kept telling she could hear Tutti's voice. She kept saying that Tutti used to fly up but did not come down easily. The neighbors were extremely cooperative and let us search their backyard. Next day we started the search again. The area around the tree where we saw Tutti last was very dense and it was difficult to penetrate. We frantically searched the area but were unable to locate the poor thing. When I mentioned that Tutti might not survive in the wild, my daughter did not agree. She kept saying that she is up there.

As it approached evening, it started to thunder and rain. My daughter felt very sad and said that the little poor thing will get wet. It became so difficult to console her. She also kept saying that Tuttu is very sad due to the loss of Tutti. The next day we went to the nearest pet shop and they said that Tutti couldn't survive that long in the wild. Even in the house in Michigan, Tutti used to fall sometimes after crashing with the walls. Once she was sick for few days. I came to conclusion that Tutti might have attempted to fly to other branches and in the process fell down in the thick bushes. I tried to look for her in the wild bushes but it was almost impossible to look for her. Finally we gave up. I tried to console my daughter that if Prophet Solomon was alive he could have talked to Tutti and brought her back. In our Muslim belief we believe that Solomon understood the language of all birds. This was a miracle bestowed on him from God.

I myself felt consoled after confirmation that Tutti was transferred to heaven from this world and her escape was as per the Plan of God. I firmly believe in the verse of the holy book which says "To God we all belong and to God we will all return". Although Tutti's last moments in the wild were indeed frightening to contemplate it was the Will of God. We will surely miss Tutti but can now have comfort in her destiny. I once again told my daughter that she has to be a very nice person in this life to earn a place in paradise where Tutti is waiting for us.

Meanwhile we are all thinking of bringing another Tutti in our house to give company and solace to Tuttu. Again my daughter said that she cannot be the same Tutti.

We will always cherish the sweet memories of Tutti.

Ather, Shahida and Zainab

- Submitted by Ather, Shahida and Zainab

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