Betty The Carrier Pigeon’s Adventure

Betty the Carrier Pigeon's Adventure

A large flock of carrier pigeons lived on a small, rocky island in the middle of the rough Atlantic Ocean. They delivered important mail to the inhabitants of the surrounding islands. 

One of the pigeons was named Betty. She liked to fool around and was easily distracted. When the pigeons made their daily flight over the island, Betty was often the last to arrive. Some of the other pigeons thought she was a dreamer and worried she wasn’t reliable. 

When the weather was good, all the mail and many packages from the mainland and surrounding islands were loaded onto designated mail ships. But the weather was very variable in this region. During the frequent storms and high waves, the mail ships couldn’t dock in the ports of the small islands. That’s when the carrier pigeons would fly into action. 

The island caretaker, William, fed and looked after the pigeons. He knew each one of them very well. He could assess a pigeon’s strengths and weaknesses quite accurately. There were particularly fast pigeons for short distances and others with the endurance to make long trips. 

The most important thing was that they all reliably delivered the mail and returned safely to their island. There was always enormous joy at their reunions when they would all tell each other about their adventures. 

On a particularly cool and windy day, the carrier pigeons were called up to replace the mail ship. It was a hectic atmosphere at the departure spot. Betty watched from the island’s observation tower as a number of carrier pigeons were getting ready for their journeys. William distributed the respective flight routes as usual. 

Kevin and Scott were first in line. They were assigned thin brown envelopes strapped into pouches, and they waited patiently as William gently fastened them to their legs.

“Kevin, this letter needs to get to the mainland as soon as possible. The journey may be somewhat arduous as strong winds are forecast. Plan for breaks but please come back as soon as possible,” William said, looking up at the gloomy sky. 

Kevin nodded and William patted him on the head. Then he took off. He was hovering high above the island moments later and then he disappeared in the direction of the horizon.

Then it was the next pigeon’s turn, and so on. Betty worried that she wouldn’t get an assignment since she had dawdled a bit last time and William had been very worried. 

Then William called her name, “Here you are, Betty! You have a job waiting for you today, too,” William grinned. “It’s a little closer to home this time,” he said, winking at her. Betty beamed with pride. 

She heard one of the pigeons behind her say, “I wonder how long Betty will take this time!” 

Another replied as she was about to take off, “Coo, coo! She’s certainly not known for her speed!” 

Betty knew exactly what the pigeons were getting at. “It’s not a contest!” she thought to herself. If they only knew what she went through on her flights! 

She picked up a few more grains to fortify herself. William fastened the little bag to her leg and wished her a safe flight. 

Betty liked her job. She loved getting to know the people to whom she delivered urgent mail. There was usually a lot of gratitude in their eyes. This made her very happy and proud. 

Most of the time, the recipients even had a few tasty kernels of corn and a small bowl of water ready for her. After that, Betty would be reenergized for the flight home. She always had the nice feeling of having done a good deed.

Betty read the name of the recipient on today’s envelope and was relieved to see that she already knew the way. From the roof of her dovecote, she spread her wings and took off with a skillful flourish. 

How she loved to fly and feel the infinite freedom! With each beat of her wings, the landscape below her became smaller and the rocky island receded further into the distance.

She was daydreaming as she flew when she was startled by a loud clatter and the sound of powerful wings.

–> Continued on the next page

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