CHIQUITA THE FEATHERLESS CHICK

This story about a baby chick adopted by a loving Mexican family, especially Mama Gomez, will make you both laugh and cry. The little ones will especially enjoy the story and go “peep-peep-peeping all around the house.

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Inspiration

In 1942 when I was 12 years old, I was walking home from school when a dog ran passed me, carrying a baby chick in its mouth. I took after it and the dog dropped the chick during the chase. The bird had lost all its feathers and was shivering from the early fall weather. The chick was also weak from fright, and when I took it home my mother fed it, then covered her with a warm cloth. My mother realized the little animal would perish if she were put outside, so she decided to keep it in the house. She made a few diapers so Chiquita’s (as we named her) droppings wouldn’t soil the floor. It wasn’t long before Chiquita adopted my mother and followed her around the house like she was the “Pied Piper of Hamlin.” Before Chiquita came into our lives, my mother had planned that she and I would visit her family in Mexico City. My oldest sister Celia volunteered to take care of Chiquita while we were gone. At that time we were in the midst of the Second World War, and Celia was temporarily staying with us while her husband Sam was fighting in Europe. When we returned from Mexico, my sister conveyed the sad news that our coal furnace had gone out one night, and little Chiquita had died from exposure to the cold.

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