MADAME THEOPHILE AND THE PARROT1
After the death of Cagnotte, whose story you may have read, Theophile was so unhappy that he would not have another dog, but instead, determined to fill the empty place in his heart with cats. One of those that he loved the best was a big yellowy-red puss, with a white chest, a pink nose, and blue eyes, that went by the name of Madame Theophile, because, when he was in the house, it never left his side for a single instant. It slept on his bed, dreamed while sitting on the arm of Theophile's chair while he was writing (for Theophile was by this time almost a grownup man), walked after him when he went into the garden, sat by his side while he had his dinner, and sometimes took, gently and politely, the food he was conveying to his own mouth.
One day, a friend of Th6ophile's, who was leaving Paris for a few days, brought a parrot, which he begged Theophile to take care of while he was away. The bird not feeling at home in this strange place, climbed up to the top of his cage and looked round him with his funny eyes, that reminded you of the nails in a sofa. Now Madame Theophile had never seen a parrot, and it was plain that this curious creature gave her a shock. She sat quite still, staring quietly at the parrot, and trying to think if she had ever seen anything like it among the gardens and roofs of the houses, where she got all her ideas of the world. At last she seemed to make up her mind:
i Menagerie Intime.