I’m not going to describe them, I’m not a bird watcher, but I am a bird listener. My jungle house is an aviary. I’m awakened and put to sleep by the songs of these incredible creatures. They love it here. My land is bird friendly.

On September 11, 1992, I was awakened by a clatter. Early morning jangles make me nervous. I scurried to the kitchen. I had one phone.  It stood there staunchly, red lights flashing. When I put the receiver to my ear, I could hear Billy’s voice.

“Mom,” his voice crackled thick with urgency. I thought there was a problem in Honolulu, but before I could speak he  did, “Know you don’t listen to the news. Storm’s coming. Big. Turn the radio on.”

I’m not a cool-head. My first response to disaster is panic. Standing in silent stillness I  screamed and yelled and tore my hair.


“Yeah. When?”

“We’re going to shelter now.”

“Not a breath of air here.”

“There will be.”


“Check out the nearest shelter.”

“Can I take the horses?”

“Call first thing tomorrow,” the line went dead.

Billy had helped me with the horses before hurricane Ewa. We’d chased them to hell and gone, trees crashing down around us as they raced for open country.  They sense stuff. We were living up the Alexander Dam Road in a big tough lava rock house. My husband  helped us get Flash and Beau in the barn and he and  Billy went to bed. I stayed in the rickety barn. All I can remember about that night was the noise. The sound of that storm was the roaring thundering thump beat of a thousand over-heated hearts.

This time I had three horses and not a Bill or a Billy in sight. Once I settled down I got to work. My house had survived Ewa with nary a scratch and I clung to that. I battened down the hatches. Secured everything I could. My idea was to lock the horses in the their stalls, get the cats and the dogs and- eventually-me in the car and ride it out. The horses were edgy under roof. I tried to calm them.

The first thing I noticed were the birds. It seemed like hundreds of them were feather- scrunching in the pasture and  the cattle in the hills  were lumping together across the street. I put three pans of food in the car, nibbles for the dogs and the cats, carrots for the horses, a bottle of wine for me and stood my ground. When a swirling gust threw me into the wrought iron, I checked into  my shelter and huddled down. Before the night was over the dogs were eating carrot, the horses nibbles, but I had the wine all to myself.

The next morning when the birds took off with a joyous whirr it was a celestial event. When a lost peahen in a tree let out a shriek all of us knew we’d made it.

It was a glorious golden morning on Kauai.


6 Responses

  1. Love this! As you know, I’m a total bird brain.
    Need to come to Kaua‘i again and be sure to bring my binoculars!

    Some great Hawaiian birds. Some nice human residents, too.


    • Me, too. I have a macaw named Duke. He mimics me exactly. Tomorrow I’m going to write about the Eastern most book shop in America. i wish you could be there with me.


    • So may they are impossible to coiunt. And the numbers are grow8ing. I think that’s cause we’re flushing out the creeps. they work at flushing out themselves. Love’ya ME


  2. I need to get caught up on Bettejo blogs.
    Bettejo is a national treasure.

    I remember when the TGI blog was nasty and vicious and, contrary to what Wheeulz sez, there are people in that blog who would absolutely do terrible things.

    I agree with Wiz that Bettejo offers us literary treasures couched in humor, insight and brilliance.

    Never forget, Bettejo, that you have many friends.
    And look at the quality of your friends compared with the quality of those who take cheap shots at you, and take the difference as a compliment.


    • I can’t seem to pick up your complete comment Will ry again. Love’ya. ME


    • I got it EMERALD, I love you guys so much. You all make ,e want to the best writer in the whole world. Love’ya ME


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