the Blue Jay

Boy – birds are crazy this time of year. It reminds me of when I got Piper as a puppy. It was ten years ago about this time of year, and we lived in an apartment then. Apparently it was near a Blue Jay – and I’m guessing – her nest? Well, whenever we would go outside, we were harassed constantly. Now – this was the largest Blue Jay I’d ever seen, and it was not afraid of man – nor beast.

(this isn’t the actual Blue Jay – this is a stand-in double. The actual one was much bigger – and more angry!)

But I wasn’t even just targeted when I had Piper. Once when I went out alone, it was waiting for me on the stairwell banister and swooped down sinking its talons (okay, feet! – but they were gross) into my hair and knocking my hat off as I ran down the stairs. Ugh. I can still feel those nobbly – uh, feet – on my neck. Ewww. . .

Piper wasn’t afraid at all – of course. She was the most confident puppy ever. She would pull to get to the Blue Jay. And not sure whether I was protecting my puppy or the bird, I would keep her away.

But this one day – we’d both finally had enough – and when it landed on a garden flag eye level with Piper almost daring me, I slacked off on Piper’s leash. And with Lion King like prowess, she leapt toward the Blue Jay and stepped on its tail feathers, holding it to the ground. And for about two seconds, they stared at each other.

Then, as if Piper knew she’d been heard, she stepped back off the Blue Jay. It flew away and though we saw it around from time to time – it never bothered us again. There was an unspoken understanding. And even as a puppy, Piper assumed her role as Queen of all creatures great and small.


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