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Colorado, United States

Monday, January 11, 2016

Unintentional Buddhists

Last summer on a trip to Iowa my husband stopped the car twice to save bugs. Yup, bugs. Yup, twice.

While driving down a peaceful street in the small town where I grew up I noticed a spider frantically hanging on to the passenger side mirror as his web was beginning to untangle in the breeze. I commented on the situation to my husband, he pulled the car over, scooped up the spider and set him in the grass alongside the road. Amazing, right?

Well on the same trip while driving along a similar quiet street we noticed a ladybug hanging on for dear life to one of the windshield wipers. My Mom was in the car with us and when The Mister slowed down to pull over she asked what he was doing. I said, "He's saving a life." She looked quite puzzled then smiled as she watched him carefully pick up the ladybug and lay it in the grass. 

Last summer while walking the dogs I noticed a tiny bunny quivering in the grass near a busy street. I quickly walked the dogs home and went back to check on the little ball of fur. By this time he was sitting in the middle of the road and I knew it was only a matter of time before ~ well, you know. So taking a chance that Mommy was not around to care for the babe, I scooped him up (barely filling the palm of my hand) and carried him away from the street. 

I decided to settle him in our backyard, fingers crossed that he would be safe. At least he was away from traffic.

Over the next days and weeks we kept an eye on him. The Mister even printed out "Please watch for a tiny baby bunny" in Spanish and gave it to our landscapers. They smiled and nodded and I'll be darned ~ they watched out for him. We named him Karson (because I found him on Carson Street - but all of our animals are "K's" so we spelled it Karson). He spent the summer safely under our deck, coming out in the morning and late afternoon to munch his grassy breakfast and dinner. 

We have a lot of bunnies in our yard and we think Karson is still out there. We want to believe he is.

Fast forward to this winter in the West ~ one of the coldest and snowiest we can remember. Having been Colorado residents for 40+ years we usually don't mind winters here. It snows, but the sun comes out in that brilliant blue sky and melts it all within a couple of days.

Not so this year. It has been snowing and frigid cold since early December and that snow is not going anywhere.

And that is no bueno.

So when we noticed a teeny, tiny little mouse in our garage a couple of weeks ago we knew killing him was not an option (remember the spider and the ladybug) and turning him out into the cold was not an option either. So we decided as long as he confined himself to the garage we would just keep an eye on him.

However when we discovered he had invited a friend inside to share his space, we knew we had to do something. Again, killing was not an option so as is our wont, we turned to Amazon and found [what we hoped would be] the solution. Meet the Mice Cube a humane way to handle an unwanted visitor.  This blogger explains it well.

The Mister followed the directions exactly and after a couple of days - lo and behold - I heard little stirrings in the tube this morning. Sure enough I saw a tiny little guy munching on some peanut butter inside the cube. The Mister checked the other cube - and bingo - another snacking away! I held the door as our dogs and especially the cat, curiously watched as he carried them outside and released them into the wild. We feel the little critters will survive the weather as it is warming up this week.

[One thing to note - should you have visitors like this and want to do the humane thing - check the cubes often because the little guys can suffocate if left in there too long.]

As I thought about our experiences with the living creatures with whom we share the planet ~ from spiders to mice to bunnies ~ I smiled. My passion is rescue pets (especially older ones) ~ no matter the price of their care ~

and it seems my love for them is spilling over into all creatures great and small. We all serve a purpose on this planet.

I'm not saying we're all that ~ we're nothing special. But I do believe we now find ourselves as unintentional Buddhists. And that's not such a bad way to live. 

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