We had some interesting times in my neighborhood in Marion of late. I've talked on the air about the heavy police presence on several occasions. Well, something else strange happened on my street Wednesday afternoon. In fact, it went down right in my backyard.

I had just returned from picking up Carly and Cayleigh from school. I was in my kitchen when I noticed that my next door neighbor and another man were both looking up at my house. The man was calling out to something. "Here Eecker!" I could hear him calling out. O.K. I'll bite. What the heck is on top of my house? It turns out it wasn't on my house but instead in the huge walnut tree that extends above our home. And Eecker turned out to be a parrot. Yes, a parrot.

Eecker's owner lives on the other side of the block from my house. I've even seen him walking around with Eecker on his shoulder. They were walking around Marion several days ago when a car backfired and Eecker took off! They'd been tracking him all over the neighborhood for the past 36 hours and his latest landing spot was in my walnut tree. Efforts to retrieve him had been unsuccessful up to this point. So backup was called. Several other men with a large ladder showed up in my backyard to try and retrieve the large white parrot from my tree.

As you might imagine, ladders make me a bit nervous. It turns out that this ladder made these guys nervous too. None felt comfortable climbing up that high into the tree to try and retrieve Eecker. They then asked if they could get up on my roof and try and call him down from there. I said sure. They were in the process of climbing up when suddenly Eecker appeared as if he'd had enough. He began to climb down! We were going to have a happy ending!

Eecker apparently wasn't done sightseeing around Marion yet as he flew into my neighbor's backyard. Instead of hauling the ladder to another yard, the bird's owner decided on trying another tactic. He left Eecker's cage where his food is located open and within view. The bird returned home with a couple of hours. Owner and pet reunited. A strange afternoon finally over.

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