Monday, May 09, 2005

Every color of the rainbow!



On Easter Sunday, Jeremy and I sent my mom and little brother out to the Christian Quarter of the Old City. They were pretty sure they could get around by themselves (we had gone with them several times so they knew the way).

A few hours later, they came home. As they walked in the door, I heard a chirping sound coming from my brother’s hands, which were wrapped around something. I thought it was some kind of a toy that Steven had bought. But no – it was a real, live chick, and bright yellow. I couldn’t believe it. It was so cute and fuzzy, but I was afraid to bond with it because I knew we couldn’t keep it. Steven had named it "Chirp," and for good reason: it was chirping wildly and seemed very flustered. Jeremy took it and wrapped it in a warm towel and gave it some water to drink. It calmed down and rested for a while.

It turns out that in the Old City, mom and Steven had passed vendors selling baby chicks dyed all different colors, in celebration of the Easter holiday. Steven wanted to buy one, with the intention of giving it to another little kid. My mom gave him 50 lira (about one dollar) for this purpose, but it turns out the chick only cost 15 lira (about 30 cents)! But before he could give it away to any of the eager children in the neighborhood, they wandered a little and got lost, and then just came straight home.

But what to do with the chick? I knew we couldn’t keep it. I washed my hands of its fate and delegated that responsibility to Steven and Jeremy. They went outside, intending to give it to the barber’s kids (his shop is just downstairs from us). They weren’t out. So he walked to the main road, looking for a deserving candidate. A kid on a bicycle stopped to see what was going on (two foreigners holding a wildly chirping baby chick was attracting attention). Jeremy asked him if he wanted it, and he said yes. So he handed it over, still wrapped in its towel, and the kid rode off, happy as could be.

We hope the chick had a good home, for at least a few days.

2 comments:

Rami said...

When I was a kid, I also bought a baby chick on Easter Sunday (I remember it was colored red). It was very frightened, shivering all the time and refused to eat or drink anything. My Mom tried unsuccessfully to convince me to return it or give it up, but I refused (who can resist the tears of a 7 Y/O?!!). Eventually it died 2 days later, and my Mom threw away and didn’t let me see it dead. I think your kids did the right thing, most of those chicks usually die in few days…
BTW I enjoy reading your blog. It is very interesting to see how foreigners who live in Syria (not tourists) view our country and our way of life. Thank you and keep it up…

Stellar said...

When I was a kid, my parents bought loads of these chicks. Not all at the same time but because they kept dying on us and my parents kept getting more. I have no idea why... I don't even remember having any of those chicks. Hehehe...

Kudos to you The blog is really interesting. As Rami said, it's interesting to see how foreigners who live in Syria actually see it with all it's customs and traditions. I never really lived in Syria but I visit Syria every year. At least I try...