Since joining our family Tom the cockatoo picked up a bunch of phrases, including "what ya doing", "get back to work" and "stop that" - often said with comic timing. Never happier than in the workshop with me - the more noise and dust the better - she did have an annoying habit of picking up my chisels and dropping them off the bench when I wasn't watching. She would often come with me onsite when Nette couldn't - loving the chance to sit in the passenger seat as I drove.
Tom's background is a mystery as we got her from a couple who had rescued her from the RSPCA. Thinking she was a boy they called her Tom. She could dance, shake hands and even sit on my arm - preferring to fall off rather than use her claws for grip. She loved being scratched, inclining her head whenever she saw Nette because she obviously was the best scratcher in the flock. Her favourite food was ANZAC biscuits, though at a pinch Scotch Fingers were OK. When given an icing biscuit she would carefully pick out the icing first, before eating the rest.
Tom could even say my name, Simon, which she did every now and then when she could hear me but not see me.
Sadly, Tom died on Saturday - we'll miss her.