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Reisverslag Why volunteer at an animal shelter?
10 september 2017
Why volunteer at an animal shelter?
The last weeks many people asked me; why volunteer at an animal shelter? Why the focus on animals? The question made me think about it more thoroughly. Therefor in this blog time for some reflection.
Last Wednesday I watched the documentary Kedi. A moving film about street cats in Istanbul. One of the scenes that really struck me was that of an old, tough Turkish man. He told the filmmakers what his cats meant to him and said: "They de-stress me the way a rosary does." He also told them that in earlier times sailors took cats with them. The cats were thought to absorb the surplus energy on the ship. Quite extraordinary, don’t you think? This scene made me think about the role animals played in my life. Let me share some memories.
Unfortunately I always was a troubled sleeper. I didn't fall asleep easily, still don't. I remember that my cat Grootoog (literal translation: Big Eye. And yes indeed, he had very big eyes.) jumped on my bed each night and stayed at my side. He waited each night until I was sound asleep. His presence comforted me and made me feel more relaxed. To me he was one of my best friends.
I also remember that as a child I sometimes crawled into our dog's bed and slept by her side. I felt really protected by her. My mom sometimes left me on the sidewalk next to our dog Paco, while doing a quick grocery. Knowing that I was completely safe in my pram with Paco by my side, who protected me as one of her own.
I had pets all my life. And although I am no fan of animals in small cages, as a child I had several. I had guinea pigs, rabbits, gerbils, hamsters and parakeets. As a family we had cats, a dog, chickens and a lamb. So I guess I can safely say that I grew up between animals :) And, until today, I feel gratitude towards my parents for that!
Animals made me feel safe. And they still do. Something in their being relaxes me. Makes me feel more at home and in touch with my body and the earth. There is only here and now for them. In that way they’re wise teachers as well. So although I don’t normally use a rosary to de-stress, I can definitely relate to the Turkish man’s statement.. :)
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10 september 2017 19:55 | Door: marij
Mooi gezegd! X
10 september 2017 20:08 | Door: Mirjam
Hah, jij bent snel !! :) Thanks Xx