shanlung (shanlung) wrote,

Riamfada freeflight hide&seek // When I am with her, am I with her? // Handing over sequence


Riamfada freeflight hide&seek and various mishaps

more photos in flickr folder 'Riamfada freeflight hide&seek and various mishaps'

Please do not do what you see me do.


A parrot truely need not do any freeflights. Allowing him/her to fly inside your home made safe for that will give 95% of all the benefits from flying.

Allowing your parrot to fly in harness and leash, might add 4.9% more. But that being said, the sheer pleasure to you of taking your parrot outdoors with you and to fly cannot be imagined. If you have prepared yourself by first letting your parrot fly in semi free flight conditions (flying in big enclosed space eg gym or in big hall) , and then taking careful small steps outside in harness and short leash, that should be safe enough.

Long distance harnessed flights should be after you and your parrot thoroughly trained together, flying your parrot in head winds, tail winds, cross winds, shifty wind conditions, from high to low, and low to high.

Do not do free flights. That 0.1% benefit to your parrot is not worth the nightmare if things go wrong.

Free flight is dangerous, extremely dangerous with any kind of parrot, and especially a grey.

Free flight might add 0.1% to the benefits of flight to your parrot. But the adrenaline rush to you is immense. That comes from living dangerously, knowing Murphy might just turn up.

Folks, I had to run that once more again. Just in case folks had not seen what I wrote in report earlier.

The day after I wrote of that free flights done with Riamfada in the villa, I kept thinking of the free flight hide& seek.

So while foraging for tiny mulberry fruits for Riam, I decided to do the hide&seek with unleashed Riamfada.

While my wife whimpered, she hold on to the rod/reel for me to take the Hawaiian snap from the swivel joint.

I talked softly to Riamfada as to what a beautiful gal she was. She seemed edgy to me. I quickly walked her to the front door where there was a overhang from the roof. To talk to her more. She seemed better. And preened my fingers.

I then walked her to hand her over to my wife taking the camera from her.

We then did a free flight on a line of sight first.







That felt good when she winged her way at first cue. She flew in an arc and landed on me.

I felt I could take her to that next stage. I handed her over to my wife. Gave her a seed that she threw away. Head rubbed her and felt it was ok with her. I walked behind the villa to be sight unseen from Riamfada.

I then called, and pressed on the camera button to start the sequential shooting even before she rounded the corner.

With a big relief, I heard the flaps of her wings and saw her flying past the corner. She flew high, arced about and was flying to me. I panned the camera keeping her in view by gut feel and these were the shots.







My wife then came to me while I was praising Riamfada. To take her on her perch while I walked back around the corner for another hide & seek recall.

I called her and these were a couple of the shots.



By themselves, the photos were not remarkable. No Riamfada in the photos. The photos looked identical. But they were not. The first photo was P1330491 and the last photo was P1330536 or 45 photos taken between the first and the last.

I deleted the bulk of the photos in between those 2 photos in the folder.

Those 5 seconds of sequential shooting were very long 5 seconds for me.

For Riamfada did not take off from my wife at my cue to me. To be fair to her, Riamfada was good enough not to take off from my wife remaining on her perch.

I felt something was not right. Not just that Riamfada did not fly around the corner to me.

I could not feel her mental presence with me. I rushed around the corner to see her still on that perch, but slightly trembling away. I hold her harness. Reached down to take the Hawaiian snap on the ground next to rod/reel and leashed Riamfada.

I then could breath again that Riamfada was safe once more.

I took her over, for headrubs to comfort her and be with her.

I thought enough of free flights for that day , even the line of sight free flights. Something upset Riamfada. No more chances would be taken with her.

We then went out of the villa onto the quiet neighbourhood road. I walked down the road. My wife with the camera asked if I wanted shots. I thought we have so many sequential shots of Riam flying down that road to me posted on FLickr folders. Even more sequential shots in my laptop I did not bothered to upload. So of course, I told her not to bother.

Riamfada heard. And chose that time to do her parroty joke on all of us. She flew zig zag to me. She flew on behind me. My wife then later told me she soared up above me, did two tight circle above me that dropped the leash line in two loops around my body, and then she dropped down to me.

When my wife was not shooting, because I told her not to shoot. Because I thought that would be more of the same.

We walked on to where the road turned. And did a round the corner recall. We did so many of this recall.

Except I was not careful when I walked around the corner. As the leash line was unreeled, I did not stay on road center but walked near the corner. The leash line was caught about a border stone. So when Riam flew to me around the corner, the leash was caught. She swung over and landed on the wall.

I then noticed where she landed were a couple of nails on the wall. Her line was caught there as well. I reeled in the leash around that border stone. I took the perch from my wife to lift that leash from the nails. Riamfada was miffed. She did not fly down to me even when the leash was cleared. I could not and would not drag her off the wall. Riam must be given respect and dignity due to her.

But she stepped up on the perch and allowed herself to be brought down.




I thought we called it a day and walked back to our villa.

I thought we would end it with that fly to me back into the villa. I stepped inside the compound and called. We did this so many times before.

But Riamfada flew down the road. Past our villa and continued to fly. Until the line brought her short. She flew back towards my wife and beyond her. Until the line brought her short and she landed on the road.

I rushed out. She seemed ok. And I tried to do another hide & seek into the villa. Riam took off but flew down the road. Until the leash brought her short and she turned into the bouganvilla bush outside the neighbour house.

It was not a very good day.

Perhaps Riam got out of wrong side of the bed. If Murphy was not around, Murphy send in his nephew to deputize for him.

So if you think things turn out fine each time, you can be very wrong.
There are days that will not be your day. The mental connection was not there, or the stars are of the wrong configuration, or Murphy or family out and about.

Or it might be the pain of departure filtered through to Riamfada and affected her.

That day was a day that I was happy for the harness and leash.

I do not care to show those terrible sequences in the blog. I do not just write of the good things. I think I write of blemishes, warts and all.

I have to write also when things go not as planned. I was lucky.
It seemed the more I planned, the better I prepared, the more lucky I got.

Will you be as lucky?


Now you know the story, you can go into the flickr folder to see them if you so choose.

more photos in flickr folder 'Riamfada freeflight hide&seek and various mishaps'


When I am with her, am I with her?

It was not just on those outings that Riamfada was with me.

She was with me almost from the time I woke up. After toiletries, she would be let out of her room. She would fly to the living room. Then she doubled back into the kitchen where I fixed and weighed her mash to watch me do that. She might be on my shoulder and taken out to the living room where that mash bowl was placed into the holder on the wobbly perch.

Could I count all those times to be with me, even if she was not on me physically.

Such as when we do go out. Sometimes on drives that were many hours long. She was then on the perch over the back seat and enjoying herself even if we had little physical contact. Would that be time with me or not.

With the summer still warm and the sun burning hot most of the time until late afternoon, I had little desire to be outdoor.

So much of the time was spend in the house. Two places would dominate. The chair in front of the laptop where I browse the Internet, read news or play chess. Or on the sofa facing the TV where I watch the news, CNN, BBC or Aljazeera, or to read a book.

Riamfada was often on my shoulder. When I was on the sofa, she might climb down to my lap, on the seat of sofa, or on the back of the sofa.

She might preen and do her thing when on me. Would that be counted as time with me?

Now and then, she would fly off to the perch to poop, and then fly back to me.
Or she would be clambering up and down the sisal ropes, clawing and jawing to check the foraging jars and not physically on me. But then, I would be watching her and hearing of news from the corner of my mind, with my focus 80% on her and her antics.

Would that time be counted that she was with me even when physically she was not with me but my mind was with her.

I contrast that to when she was physically with me on the sofa or on the chair and getting headrubs. Those headrubs were done sub-consciously, with me on Internet or reading a book. My attention then was 80-90% elsewhere and only 10% on her. Even when ever so often, she turned her head and very gently mouthed my finger.

She clearly knew when I was playing chess and 100% focused on that. After a while, she would leave me to chess and would fly away to the perches behind me. If it was all silent, I had to turn to see what she was doing, normally something that she knew she should not do such as chewing my ciggies or the TV remote control. At least Riam was better than Tinkerbell. In that the moment I played chess on the Internet, Tink would fly into rage and set out to tear away the keyboard or bite the mouse until I stop playing chess.

So how do you count the time together.

What about the time she was not physically on me and I going around the foraging jars placing treats inside them but thinking of the fun that would give Riamfada.

Would that be counted as time with her?

Or maybe time just cannot be counted. How can one measure what is in the heart.

Just rambling on some random thoughts.


Handing over sequence

Dommie changed a bit in the last few weeks. Perhaps he knew too. He spend lots of time with me. Even if sadly, the sofa was off limits for him. I did not set the rule. Riamfada set that, and would chase Dom whenever he tried to get on the sofa with me.

In the evening when Riam was asleep in her room, Dom would like to get on the sofa.

And when we get to bed, while my wife was having her shower, Dommie would jump to the bed next to me and purr and purr away. Until my wife came to bed and traitor Dom would then go to her side. But often enough, Dom would sleep between us, in touch with both of us.

On Wednesday, 29 Sept 2010, Dommie will be taken to Omer. His home will be there from that day.

On Thursday, 30 Sept 2010, Riamfada will be taken to the Jabri family with everything and all the perches. I will set up the perches there. Her home will the there from that day.

We will still be around for a few more days. To resolve problems.

Wish them all your love and happiness, and may they and their caregivers be happy.


Change of flight plan

Winding down in Muscat took a bit more time then I thought. I forgot that after Ramadan, there was a week of public holiday. That affected my winding down plans.

So instead of flying off on 26 Sept 2010, I will now fly off on 3rd Oct 2010.


I knew we were here in Oman on borrowed time since the end of last year. Ever since early this year, I expected I have to leave Oman and all my creatures here. If you have not known about all that and wondered why I cannot take Riamfada with me, please read the following.

Riamfada foraging // 3 days 2 nights at Wadi Bani Awf and ending of this chapter

Closing this chapter//Buwah off Harban with Dommie// Beautiful Wadi Qurai

Dedication // Raining curses on Katie at Al Felaij Dam // Riam in cage at Jabri

Mystic octopus // Snake Tshirt and more hide&seek recalls //Countdown to chapter end

It is painful enough for me as it is. So please read or re-read above before you write to me wondering why I have to leave them. Please do not make it even more painful for me to reply and tell you things I have said above because you had not read that.


An important key in your relationship and understanding your parrot mentality from Tinkerbell Legacy
Tinkerbell Legacy - Living with a flying parrot - Rant 03 (a flighted parrot mentality)

Important old letters on harness
Harness for flighted parrots – To Nick and folks

August, 2005.

‘ cargo cult'

'Ramadan & Kitties on beach// Chess -1st Saturday IM Tournament // Tinkerbell Harness for Piper '

Making of Tinkerbell Mash
Morning with Harry & the decision// Sultan of Oman Palace// Tinkerbell Mash Batch 7


If you like the photos here, they are all taken by my wife and uploaded on my behalf by her.

She has her own sets of photos in her Flickr account here



If what I wrote help you and you like to help, give a thought
for the wildlife sharing our planet.
Do write that cheque to Gerald Durrell wildlife trust

I am a life member of Durrell Wildlife Conservation Trust. Do join us to do
whatever we can for the wildlife that shared our planet.
or to any wildlife conservation body of your choice


For those that through no fault of their own, or otherwise, and had to part painfully and unwillingly from their beastie or birdies, whether in the past, or the present, or in the future, I dedicate the saga of Riamfada that I had wrote , and continue to write to that final handover , to you all.


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