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A Nomad's Notes: Another bird for my collection

I’ve owned birds from a young age. When I was 7 or so, I got my first parakeets, Buster and Hollow. When I picked them out my parents wanted to know what I wanted to name them, and those two just kind of floated out of my mouth.

I had them for years before Hollow died, followed not long after by Buster. There was an interlude of a few years before I got a little green parakeet and named him Maximus. I was going through a hardcore “Gladiator” obsession.

I don’t remember much about him except he was feisty and died about 10 years ago. I went a couple of years without a pet bird before getting a blue-and-yellow one and named him Spirky, a reference to Kirk and Spock of “Star Trek” and their respective uniform colors.

At first Spirky was docile and would get on my finger and let me pet him. Then one day without provocation he started to act like an angsty teenager and would puff out and attack if my hand got anywhere near him. So instead I enjoyed him from afar. He passed away my last year of college.

Once I was on my own for the first time in a different state from my family, I wanted companionship again, this time in the form of two birds, Horus and Alex; one named after an Egyptian god and one named after an original character in my head.

Unfortunately, Horus got mites on his beak that Alex somehow never did. I took him to an avian vet and he was doing better. Then one day in August 2015 my mom and I took a walk and came back and found he’d passed. I still feel guilty about that and try not to think about it for fear of sobbing.

Alex loved Horus dearly and we could tell she missed him when he was gone. Because she loved him so much, once he passed other bird people said it’s best to have just her. So she’s still my girl, who hangs in her cage and only chirps when she hears running water and deep male voices. I’ll continue to have birds the rest of my life.

Because of the pet birds I’ve had, I’m part of multiple Facebook groups celebrating them. When I’m happy or sad I’ll find a video of a bird to cheer me up. I think they’re some of God’s cutest creatures.

This entire history is what came to mind when I was perusing the gallery showing of Marcia Zachary of Sunset Beach, who had the opening for her gallery at Sunset River Marketplace on April 4 courtesy of Lower Cape Fear Hospice, which featured some paintings of birds. I had the pleasure of going with her to Dane Delane Salon Studio in Ocean Isle Beach earlier that day to watch her get pampered. She told stylist Frankee Williams that most of her artwork had been painted in the 1980s, mostly of scenery, including a field of poppies.

“God made a beautiful Earth, honey, you’ve got to enjoy it,” she told Williams as her hair was washed.

It was profound enough that I wrote it down in my phone. Later that day after Zachary had been properly pampered and changed outfits, she looked amazing in blue-and-gold as she interacted with those at the gallery opening.

I was there near the beginning of the opening and saw that one of the paintings on the wall had been sold already and impulsively decided I’d like to buy one to support Zachary.

There were two paintings close together, both depicting ducks. The one on the bottom was a group of ducks flying through what looked like the cold woods. The one above it was a single adorable duck flying over what looks like the ocean. I felt more closely connected to that one, probably because it depicted the ocean but also I see a bit of myself in that painted duck: alone, traveling along, living near the ocean. So I bought it.

But I’m not taking my artwork home just yet because Zachary’s show at the gallery continues through this Saturday, April 13. It’s worth taking a look at the pieces while you still can.

What’s amazing about that gallery is it feels never-ending; it’s just section after section of art by local artists. I don’t even know if a whole day is sufficient time to properly take it all in but it’s worth a try. I even found a piece depicting an Egyptian street that I’d love to save up for and also own someday.

I want to thank Marcia for the words of wisdom she didn’t realize she gave me and for her talents that will soon go on my wall. It will be treasured for ages to come.

For more information, go to https://www.facebook.com/SunsetRiverMarketplace/or sunsetrivermarketplace.com.

Lindsay Kriz is a staff writer for the Beacon. Reach her at 754-6890 or lkriz@brunswickbeacon.com.