Another year has passed, filled with heartwarming joys, sweet surprises and, as we have come to accept, great loss. We have grown to understand the natural flow of life includes not only the glorious sun-soaked days but also the overcast chilly nights—both bringing a measure of balance to our lives.
The girls experienced their share of loss again this year with both Zula and Bunny passing unexpectedly. Ned graced us for too few days and left us with a gift too great to measure. We kept moving forward as we have learned to do, being thankful for the sweetness and reflective of the bitter.
Without fail, you have been there with your kind words and support, and yes, even the occasional criticism reminding us that we can always do better, always reach higher in our efforts. Your love and support is a key component of the circle of life which is the Sanctuary; without you we would be incomplete, just another place where elephants reside.
This year has provided many memories, many lessons and even more reasons to believe in our work to help elephants recover in this foreign place called captivity. Thank you for all you have done to help Our Girls and Ned find some well deserved peace this year.
|New Year's Eve with the Elephants
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to be posted on New Year's Eve (CST)...
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Happy New Year to everyone!
The Elephant Sanctuary Solstice 2009
At T-E-S on the solstice, winter 2009,
The eles and everyone else there were fine,
For caregivers watch out and are always aware
Of the health and well-being of all who live there.
After dining on vegetables, fruit, grain and hay,
The Founding Herd girls were back home for the day.
Tarra and her dog friend, furry white Bella,
Were laughing with Scott, their favorite T-E-S fella.
Winkie relaxed in her spot in the barn,
Reassured and caressed by Sissy’s sweet charm.
And as Dulary and Misty discussed the best way
To finally squash their red ball the next day,
Shirley came in, squinted an eye,
Smiled a smile, and kicked a leg high.
The African eles were in a good mood;
Tired, but munching on fresh, healthy food.
Tange and Flora had wrestled with joy
For a huge rubber tire they use as a toy.
The sweet tender trio, Liz, Frieda, and Billie,
Were singing and making some sounds that were silly.
There was popping, and chirping, and even a squeak,
Some blowing, a trumpet, and a roar not so meek.
The Grand Diva eles were home, out of the cold.
(The eles don’t like chilly weather, we’re told.)
Lottie watched with one eye as Minnie spun and played,
Calmly tossing and eating her big flakes of hay.
Debbie checked with her trunk through the flaps of the door
While Ronnie waited and squished a toy ball on the floor.
It was nippy that night and Debbie just had to know
If that scent in the air was a warning of snow.
And by the little pine tree, there was a beautiful sight.
The heart and stars gathered and glowed with soft light.
As angels and guardians of this special place,
Their spirits protect every ele and space.
Barbara, Tina and Lota, Jenny, Queenie and Delhi,
Stood with Ned, Bunny and Zula, the African ele.
And Joanna sent a wish, which soared and took flight:
“Happy Solstice to all, and to all a good night!”
Ele-aunt of the EleFan Herd