No one knows how the bird got in the bathroom.
A year ago on New Year’s Eve, a green parakeet was left in the men’s room at Catamount Arts.
It was shortly before the organization’s biggest event of the year, First Night North, and Artistic Director Molly Stone was taking care of last-minute business when employees approached her with a curious question.
“Bird in a box in the men’s bathroom?”
Her interest was piqued.
As promised, she found a cardboard box punched with holes. It was neatly stacked on a toilet tank with birdseed and other supplies. Back in her office, she lifted the lid to peek inside, and the bird flew out.
For a moment, three senior leaders of Catamount Arts — Executive Director Jody Fried, Production Director Derek Campbell, and Stone — paused plans for the 8-hour, 12-venue, 80-act First Night North to corral the abandoned avian.
Stone eventually grabbed it (suffering beak bites in the process) and a cage was quickly purchased.
“It was complete chaos for several minutes,” Stone said. “This was the biggest night of the year for us and it came to a screeching halt because we had this bird that needed our help. Nothing else mattered for a moment until we had this bird under control.”
Meanwhile Stone’s three children, Charlotte (then 13), Scotland (11) and Eoin (8) were upstairs watching a movie in Catamount’s theater.
Days earlier they had asked their mother if they could have a pet bird. Stone had responded with an emphatic “No.” Fate, it turns out, had other plans.
They exited the film, “Miracle On Ice,” to discover a real-life miracle.
“They were shocked, they couldn’t believe what they were seeing,” Stone said.
The story doesn’t end there.
Stone and her ex-husband share custody of the children. The bird, named Kiwi for its green plumage, helped to heal old wounds.
“The bird came back with us on the first night. The kids went to their dad’s house the next day. They wanted to bring the bird and it ended up staying there,” Stone said. “It was like this thing that linked the two houses again and bridged the gap between us.”
Kiwi lives with a partner, a white parakeet named Anne, and is reportedly quite happy.
To this day, nobody knows who left the bird in the bathroom.
In a Facebook post, she wrote, “I’m guessing this was a Christmas gift gone wrong. Someone purchased a parakeet as a gift and realized they were not natural bird parents? I don’t know. But what I do know is that this poor creature landed on the right toilet.”