ROXBURY, NJ – Marilyn Bennett’s horrible weekend began Saturday when her pet parakeet bolted out an open door at her Ledgewood condominium.
It got worse Sunday night as thunderstorms rolled over Roxbury and the 76-year-old Willow Walk resident wondered if she’d ever again see her beloved “Lulu.”
But then came Monday morning’s phone call from Danielle Weynberg of Succasunna. Lulu was in good hands, and – thanks to some social media posts by Mitchell’s daughter after the bird escaped – Weynberg not only knew about the missing pet but also knew who to call.
The Weynbergs live on William Court in Succasunna. That's about two miles away as the crow, or parakeet, flies from Lulu's home.
Weynberg, on Facebook, said her husband went up on the roof and made the rescue. “We were so glad to reunite him with his family,” she wrote. “My husband found him on my car and then ended up climbing up on the roof to get him down. We kept him safe till the family got here!”
And Out the Door He Went
With Lulu back home and recovering from his self-imposed ordeal, Mitchell was feeling joyful Monday afternoon.
“We are so thrilled she said. “I can’t express how happy we are. It’s not easy to get a bird back when they take off like that.”
Mitchell said a careless mistake on her part was to blame. She was out on her deck Saturday while Lulu – as he’s allowed to do about twice a day – was free inside her home.
“I was going try to get back in and I told my daughter to get the bird back into the kitchen where he wouldn’t see me,” she said. But Lulu wasn’t so easily fooled.
“I was only halfway in; I’d just put my foot in the doorway,” she said. “Then, he scooted out.”
She said the 8-month-old bird “was flying back and forth over the deck a little bit” but then disappeared. “All of a sudden, he went off the deck and that was it,” Mitchell said. “We tried to find him. We didn’t know where he landed.”
Saturday night was bad for Mitchell. Sunday night, with its storm, was beyond bad. “He was out all night in the rain last night,” she said.
The weekend on the lam took its toll on Lulu too. “He’s bewildered,” Mitchell said. “He’s eating a lot now. He’d been very hungry. And he’s drinking a lot of water … He’s still a little bit puffy; that means he’s not all better. His feathers should be closer to his body. When they get sick, they puff out a little bit.”
It Won't Happen Again
However, Lulu seemed to be on the road to recovery. Mitchell was seeing signs of playful normalcy returning to her little friend.
“He knows his toys and he just started touching them every now and them,” she said. “I had to go out this afternoon. When I came home he started chirping … He’s coming along.”
Mitchell said she plans to have her little escape artists’ wings clipped, at least during the summer when there’s even the most remote chance of him pulling another unauthorized exit through an open door.