Monday, February 28, 2011

A time to remember and to say farewell

Yesterday was a time to remember and say "farewell" to our beloved donkey friends, and other animal friends. We gathered at Memorial Hill by the pond on the DSC property, around an open fire and after a short welcome by Sandra Pady, there were four cedar offerings placed on the fire. The first offering was to remember those animals who have touched our lives, to remember their faces, their names, their voices and everything that made them special to us, the memory that bind them to us. The second offering was to recognize any suffering or pain that our animal friends may have experienced. The third offering was to recognize those caregivers who support and nurture the animals and help them in their transition and the last offering symbolized our anticipation of all those times yet to come in the company of animal friends.
Then Kim, our operation manager, sang the song "Ripple" accompanied by  guitar played by one of our few male volunteers. I didn't know that Kim had such a beautiful singing voice, even though she claims to have only sung in public when she is drunk. After that someone read an excerpt from "Platero", which described the experiences shared by a poet and his little donkey companion.
As we arrived at Memorial Hill we were all given a flower to remember an animal friend, so after the reading it was time to remember particular animals who have graced our lives, one by one we came forward to place our flower into a vase and as we did so, speak the name of the animal we were remembering and if you wished you could include a one sentence dedication to your animal friend. I remembered Augusta, who gave me my very first donkey hug. When Helia came up to remember her Danny, that' s when I started to cry, of course she had to say Danny, the sweetest of them all.
We then said a collective Remembrance and closed with a song by Kim and Gavin.

These were only a few of the friends we remembered:
Fan, who my daughter just adored



Danny, the sweetest of them all


Windy, who will always be Cheryl's favourite girl

Gypsy, Juliet's Sister 

Dusty Rose

Chiclet, Cheri's favourite

Peaches, the poorest creature ever to arrive at the DSC
Pinta (Orly's daughter), Muffin, Nicholas, and the many more that went before my time.

In Gladness and in safety, may all beings be at ease
whatever living beings there may be:
whether they are weak or strong, omitting none,
the great or the mighty, medium, short or small,
the seen and the unseen, those living near and far away,
those born, to-be-born and those who have died,
may all beings be at ease.


Canyon Girl said...

I hope this brought you peace. It sounds like a beautiful gathering and a needed one as well. I'm crying, but I hope you feel better. Love, Inger

Tina said...

Oh it really was beautiful Inger, and it meant so much. Thanks for all your kind words to the last few entries, it's been really rough and your thoughts meant a lot.

Sharon said...

What a lovely memorial for your dear little donkey friends. I say this with tears rolling down my face and blurred vision. A moving post!