Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Where Angels don't fear to tread

We have returned for our trip to Tucson, and it was a lot of fun. I could tell you about the traffic, the hotels, driving through the Mojave (booooring!) Our visit to the end of the Grand Canyon or the drive through Zion National park (breath taking, plus fun for me in the Jeep) and that I did, indeed, find the bathrooms of the Devil, but the thing we did which moved us the most was our visit to Angels Rest in Kanab Canyon.

It’s part of Best Friends Animal Sanctuary. A small part, when you consider that the entire place is huge. It is a pet cemetery, but to call is that makes it sound like a solemn and grim place.

We arrived and entered through the gate. Immediately you are struck by the sound of wind chimes, and the colorful tokens left on the grave markers. Each chime has a small engraved plaque attached to the bottom with a family or animals names, and there are tons of them. Similar to Tibetan prayer flags, it is an audible reminder of those who are now silent. And the place is large. The memorials are for all types of animals, and several markers are in honor of humans who have passed on and felt a kinship with animals. There are many markers instructing the pets to meet their former owners at the Rainbow Bridge, so they may be together again in whatever afterlife comes. It was a powerful experience and if you are ever in the area I suggest you drive through.

We stopped there because The Kid does fundraising for Best Friend’s sister charity, No More Homeless Pets in Utah. Each year for Strut Your Mutt she collects donations and then on a Saturday in May we go to Sugarhouse Park and walk (ok, we carry Sammie Two Chews because she little and on the plump side) with about 10,000 other animal lovers to raise awareness about the importance of spaying or neutering dogs and cats to help eliminate the abundance of animals and the need for euthanasia in shelters. It was The Kids idea to do this, and because I believe you need to teach your kid that life is not just about you, I help her out with the website and the other mundane aspects of the project. Every year she has raised over $250.00 and was given special recognition two years ago for raising over $550.00. She was 12 years old and raised more money then many of the Dog Packs (groups of 5 or more) most of whom were adults. We will be participating again this year, and our visit helped fuel her enthusiasm.
I cannot find more words to describe this most peaceful spot, so I will leave you with pictures.


Anonymous said...

Thanks for the photos, Slave Driver, and congrats on your new annex here in my neighborhood! Been a tad under the weather past two days, before that up to my eyeballs in family stuff. Not always the good stuff. Glad you had an interesting trip.

And Yay! for The Kid.

After a few trips across the desert, you begin to see the details, and they are fascinating.

Lisa Deon said...

The thing that struck me most about the Mojave is that some Joshua Trees look like they were dreamed up by Dr Seuss.

The Merry said...

Beautiful photos, and much appreciated. Don't mind me if I reach for the kleenex...