Tuesday, August 11, 2009

A Remarkable Morning...

Those of you who know me, know I feed ferals at this park every morning. Something happened this morning that just killed me. I drive in and feed the birds first to keep them from the kitty food, then feed the kitty near my car and then the skunks just across the way to keep them from the kitty food. I often tell you all how close I am to skunks and I'm not kidding. Do you believe me? Probably not, but it's true.

As I was feeding everyone near the car, a couple was walking down the bike trail. Then a skunk ran across because he wanted food. I told him to knock it off and away we went into the little clearing in the woods where I feed him and his friends. I was surrounded by 5 skunks within inches. Literally. Maybe 6 inches at most. That's my life. The couple walked past and stopped to look. The husband said "Oh my God." I got up and walked out and said "I know, aren't they lovely?" And he said "Do you realize how special you are?" His wife was obviously Japanese and he was SO zen and he said a word in Japanese I didn't understand. He said "you are gifted and it is such an honor to see you with all of them. Do they ever spray you?" I replied "No." And he said again, "I'm honored to see this and he clasp his palms and he bowed, and I did too. What he did was out of absolute respect and I was so humbled I started to cry. It is an honor to be bowed to. It is the ultimate respect in Buddhism. I took Hatha Yoga for some time and we always ended our class with palms joined, bowing to our teacher out of absolute respect..

In Buddhism, the joining of palms has very symbolic meaning. You're acknowledging the shared essence of the Self and other beings. It is a sign of utmost respect. In Yoga it literally means "The light within me honors the light within you." When I started to cry both immediately came and embraced me. We all wish one another a happy life and walked away. I still had to walk up the bike trail and into the woods to feed the other ferals and skunks and birds. But I never stopped crying. I cried while there, I cried on the walk back to the car, I cried in the car, I cried at the market and the gas station. I'm still crying. Today, I was paid the highest honor and I think I'm writing this so I never forget it actually happened.
XO to all


the walking man said...

It is a rare human that will take their essence and share it with them in the world around no matter what creature it is.

1. I never had a Harley I always thought of them as crap...I rode Brit bikes because I knew them better, my favorite was a '69 BSA. But I liked Triumph's and Norton's as well. Had to give up two wheels sometime between the first and the 7th vertebrae fusion.

2. Wrong on the beard...copy and paste the link I put below. I haven't shaved or cut my hair in about 6 years now.

3. I don't stress because I recognize the difference between what I can control and what I can't control. I always keep a hand on the first and never bother with the second.

I have what I want and don't need anything I don't want.

I get more stress from typing in word verifications than anything else in the course of my day.

Otin said...

You are such a deep person! There is such goodness in your heart!

Karen ^..^ said...

That is very enlightening. A simple humble act of feeding animals that would otherwise have to struggle to find food, has touched on a very special quality in you that this couple saw, and appreciated. Were you bestowed this honor because you were a queen sitting high atop a throne? No. Were you witnessed making lots of money, with a staff of hundreds within your home? No. You were witnessed performing one act that you repeat daily, a humble act that many would never think to do. That's something that this couple saw, and saw fit to honor you for.

I'm so glad.

I read all of your posts. I don't care how much money you have, or used to have. Your life and mine are very different. You live in a large, beautiful house, have driven luxury cars and I live in a hole in the wall and drive a car ready to fall apart and create disaster within my fragile little life, but we are still linked because we share a common spirit, and love of animals, and a recognition of what is truly important. .

I used to want to have what I thought others had. I wanted money, riches, comforts, and a man to love. But I've found that I'm content with my kids, my animals and the simplicity that is my life. I have no need for power, or money or anything of that sort. I do need my family, and my fuzzies.

Life is so much better when you don't have to worry about keeping up with the Jones'.

Life is better when you realize what is truly important.

Mr. Shife said...

A virtual bow to you Suzanne from this dumb, white guy. You are indeed one special lady and as awesome as ever. I am so glad you got to have this special moment.

Anonymous said...

You deserve this repsect Suzanne, for all that you do and for the person that you are.

Suzanne said...


Thank you darling. It was a gift and I'm still absorbing it. The most beautiful lesson every.

Cars, bikes. Now see I'm not a Harley person. They're too damn loud and I'm not into noise pollution. The CHIPS officers in CA all ride BMW's. They're beautiful bikes. I'm not familiar with a '69 BSA but will Google her. I am familiar with a Triumph. Why? I can't remember!!! God, you have to introduce yourself to my friend "Skeeter." He has a gorgeous bike and travels America with it, and his brother, on another gorgeous bike. I can just see the three of you meeting up somewhere in middle America. Really. Vertebrae fusions and all! Do you love food too? Okay, match made in Heaven!!!

You know about the beard. I knew, but I decided to go against instinct. I knew you had that thing hanging from your face!!! I knew, I knew, I knew!!! But I decided you didn't. HA!!! Six years and that's all the hell you got? Are you taking vitamins?! That thing should be down to your ass by now. And if your beard was bigger I would have seen it.

Your stress advice. Absolutely priceless. I will exhale and try to move in that direction. Wonderful advice.

I'm too learning to love just what I have an not anything more. It's funny what happens with age. It's a lightening of being. And really quite beautiful.

I'm going to remove WV, but I do enjoy all the comments about it. Blogger screws with us and we're all aware. If I stop using it who's going to comment about WV?

Love you darling and thanks for the good will.


Suzanne said...


Get over her and let me give you a hug!!! You know it's so funny. With many of my blogging friends it's as if the sky opened and you all rained out to bless my life. I'm a very lucky woman.

Love you dear,

Suzanne said...


Ha! I saw it. The link didn't work so I modifided it a bit and then searched. Not to be disappointed. Perfect!!! You look terrific and I imagined that sort of beard. Too damn funny. Wow, you almost look like Walk Whitman!!! And YES, I'll email.


Megan said...

That is so freaking cool.

Honey, stop crying and look at me (okay, you can't, it's a profile and I'm going to change it soon) but anyway...

Your light is one of the best kinds. Soft and warm and loving and welcoming and caring and honest and...well, and all that.

(Wait, can light be honest? Yep, I think so.)


Suzanne said...


Thank you darling. You know, life is funny. It often kicks you in the ass to remind you it matters. I was so humbled and I knew I was supposed to learn something when I walked away. And that's why I was uable to stop crying. Sometimes lessons are bought at the cost of great pain. I know who I am. I know what I want. I want an animal sanctuary. I always have. I want desperately to save and protect all animals. I do. My experience the other day reminded me I'm born to this job. My darling blogging friend came from Texas for a visit and she was so concerned I'd become the "crazy cat lady." I'll be honest, I don't care if do. It doesn't matter to me. It matters that animals are cared for and respected. Any animal. And I realize, that's who I am.

Mike129 said...

You were paid an honor which you richly deserved.

It is that simple. And I am happy for you.

Suzanne said...


You know how much I love you. Your words and thoughts always matter and when you grace my blog I feel lucky.

I just want you to know I didn't grow up with money and in college struggled to pay rent, buy food, shampoo and conditioner for my Leo hair, and put gas in a little yellow Datsun. That Datsun cost more than the Mercedes!!! The Mercedes cost around $2,000 because Mercedes and BMW grow on trees in California!!! Yes, it's a clunker, but she's a pretty clunker!!!

My house is more than I can handle and takes more money than I have. Oh, right, I don't have any more money!!! My back forty is being taken over by a wild raspberry bush I can't afford a gardener to tame. It's buried probably 50 roses. No. I'm not kidding. It's pathetic. I'm going to try to tackle it this fall. Alone. Why? Because I'M SINGLE!!!! I'm 50 and trying to navigate this new life and family alone and currently, I'm none too happy. Do I feel rich? No. Have I ever felt rich? GOD NO. Do I live a nice life surrounded by nice neighbors in a nice neighborhood. Yes. But I spent years struggling to get here. And apparently now that I'm here, I can't stay!!! Life is a mystery.

I don't think you realize how similar we are! My fragile little world is falling apart as we speak. Could I have made better choices? YES! And that's what causes me pain every day. I'm a smart woman. I could have made better choices. And you know what honey? I didn't. I want to shake every little girl and say "Pay attention!" But that would probably border on child abuse.

And about wanting "stuff." I've never been a "stuff" sort of person or a "keeping up with the Jones'" type. I've always just wanted to be happy and surrounded by family, friends and things I love, like roses, birds, kitties, dogs, etc. You know, nature. I've realized all I want is a one room loft with a sceened porch on all sides, quiet, with land and nature. Yes, I've designed it! That's my goal in the next 10 years.

You see, we're barely different, except you want your house with a man. Me? Not so much!!!

I love you and I know you know that. Thank you for making me think. You're a gem of a sister.


Suzanne said...

Mr. Shife,

And I bow to you. Thank you darling. It was very special. And you know what else is special? That darling baby of yours. Honey, he get's more adorable with each passing day. Seriously. He's too cute. Knock it off!


Suzanne said...


Get over here so I can give the back of your head a kiss!!! Thank you darling. You're too kind.

XO ;)

Suzanne said...


I love you so. You know I was just talking to a dear friend tonight about why I blog. It's because I learn so much from all of you. I do. You're all so good to me and make me better than I am. Honestly. Thank you darling.

I was just talking to Karen and told her about Debbie at Wisteria and Roses. If you have time, please visit her. You won't regret it. Turn on the speakers and after reading everything page to "Dusting Off A Thoughtful Thursday." I know.

Hopefully by the time you read this I'll have the link posted on my blog. I've been meaning to for so long it stupid. But if not, go to my birthday post. Her link is there.

I love dearly,

Suzanne said...

Also, I love you dearly!!!

Debbie in CA : ) said...

Your words, your comments upon my blog, and my name in your blogroll -- Santa couldn't bring a bigger bag of sweet gifts! You bless me! (wipes away a tear)

I was just telling Kylie that I LOVE meeting so many wonderful people through my blog, people that I may never connect with in a crowded Starbucks cafe (oh wait . . . I never go there -- see, we'd never meet there) or at a school function (my kids don't go to school . . . hmmmmm), or any number of social circles. BUT, I could be that lady that laughs with you in line at Walmart (except I have no Walmart and don't commute to one) or laughs with you as we drive down the road watching a dope get pulled over. Most of all I love throwing wide the bloggy doors for any and all to peek in and see what it's all about . . . IT'S ABOUT LOVE AND LIFE AND LAUGHTER AND MORE LOVE AND MORE LAUGHTER AND DINNERs OF LIVER TO BUILD UP MY SAGGING IMMUNE SYSTEM (and, HEY, I love liver too!).

I bow in honor to you and your zany wonderful life. We do share so much in common, really. I have a boarder under my Wendy House that I have affectionately named Mr. Stinky. He never sprays me (I never knew what an honor that was ... thanks to you, I now know I'm gifted with some special zing that makes skunks smile in my presence -- I like that). I think he's setting up house for good so I better give him another name . . . Walter sounds good to me. Walter comes out to steal all of my berries at twilight (I didn't get a SINGLE strawberry this year and Walter is fat -- maybe he's really a striped pig). Twilight is my FAVORITE time of the day . . . and so I dance in the presence of a skunk and wonder what it is about this crazy life that keeps me smiling, dancing, and wiping away tears (many of them happy).

Life is lively. Let's keep living it together. We may be different in lots of areas (I drive a white Escalade and you a black mercedes but hey they both have a great ride and I need more room for all those adorable kids and the bags of chicken feed -- they eat like pigs too), but we love the same music, and read the same books, and never met a pink rose we didn't fall head over heels for! We're kindreds. Really! (Hey, I almost forgot -- both UCLA alums, too!)

I love you, and could chat away all day (in person would be an amazing gift), but for today I have oodles of chores to do because I played at the Fair all day yesterday -- too much fun! (My chores are fun too, like baking bread and vacuuming up the peanut shells my dear hubby dropped while we watched a travel DVD and dreamed we were in Champagne France -- do they eat peanuts with champagne?) I'm signing off for now, but I'll be back. I am dealing with a bit of menopausishness (at least that's what I am claiming though the doctor rolls her eyes and says I could have more kids -- nope, five will do for now, thanks just the same), so I can relate to your rambles and tears and lots more.

I've rambled out of all blogging time (everyone on my list will just have to wait til my next blogger binge), so I'm off with a blown kiss and a hug. Hang in their girlfriend. Go feed a skunk and enjoy the honor. ; D

XO ~~ Debbie

Anonymous said...