Maybe it was just the quarantine getting to us, but the Rockefeller Center Christmas tree had one of the most robust news cycles of the year. Its droopy arrival was the butt of many a joke, and its stowaway, a northern saw-whet owl, became the light of everyone's life.
The owl, who was taken in by the Ravensbeard Wildlife Center to recover from his 170-mile journey from upstate New York to Manhattan, was released back into the wild just before Thanksgiving.
For such a small owl, she made quite the impact. Even though Rocky, as the wildlife center called her, was only with us for a short amount of time, she's become the subject of a line of merch and is now the inspiration of a brand new children's book.
T. Troy Kolo., who, along with illustrator Meredith Miner, independently published the book, told the NY Post, "When the idea struck immediately after hearing about [the owl], I sat down and started to do a couple of verses, and in a few days I had something finished."
"Rockefeller the Christmas Owl" follows the appropriately-named bird during his journey to the Big Apple, meeting friends (including St. Nick himself) along the way. Of course, as this is a Christmas-themed book, it goes deeper than that.
"It's about getting back to your parents and the importance of family and how deep that runs within most of us," Kolo. said.
We're picturing "Home Alone 2: Lost in New York," but with more animals and less bandits.
If the children's book isn't your thing, not to worry -- Rocky has been featured on other products that should suit you. From a phone case to a baby onesie, anyone can bring Rocky home with them.
All proceeds from the trinkets go directly to Ravensbeard, so they can continue to take care of and rehab all birds.