Of Turquoise & Rainbow

12 Feb 2020

The turquoise stone necklace from Nepal. Turquoise is cherished among Tibetans, First Nation Peoples, Egyptians and many old cultures for its many healing & spiritual purposes.

Today I wore my necklace of turquoise stones from Nepal to an animal shelter in Singapore. My friend had invited me to join her for some volunteering work there.

Turquoise is called the Sky Stone by Tibetans. It has many healing properties. By having turquoise on me, I wanted to remind myself to constantly project vibes of health & vitality, and not pity on the animals that I saw or touched. And of course I also wanted to look good and dress up for the cats and dogs.

Like most animal shelters, this one is located in a fairly remote part of Sg. Volunteering is a commitment that requires planning, time and travelling.

Not one to take such an opportunity lightly, we decided to dedicate today’s work at the shelter to my friend’s late brother. He had set an example of kindness to animals for his younger sister during their growing up years.

When he was studying in JC (Junior College), he rescued a kitten. He was the first in her family to persuade their parents to adopt a dog. And because of him, their home has become a refuge for a number of animals over the years.

Upon our arrival at the shelter we met a young man who was there on his own. Daryl had just completed JC and wanted to spend his time helping animals.

When my friend’s brother rescued his first kitten years ago, he was around the same age as this volunteer, Daryl. ♥️

So the morning went by with us unwrapping metal frames, hooking them to each enclosure to increase vertical space for the cats, and slipping pillow cases over the frames to form beddings for the feline occupants to sleep comfortably above ground.

“Hurry up, housekeeper! Make my bed!” Miss Tortoiseshell urged.
Our labour gave the shelter operator who is on 24/7 a bit of rest, and freed up time for the more experienced volunteers to tend to the cats’ feeding & cleaning needs.

A few were trying to climb onto their midair contraptions even as their “housekeepers” were still making their beds.

When the beddings were secured, the cats took to their mini airmocks with gratitude.

A very talented dessert chef also came to make the beds for animals! She brought SWEETNESS to the shelter.

Meanwhile, the rain came, followed by the glorious sun.

This little calico girl demanded cuddles from everyone.

Towards tea time, every single cat that was visible to us was acknowledged. Eye contact, smiles, head rubs, cuddles and wishes of healing were given & received.

This shy one came closer and put her face against the wire netting for some contact after hearing the steady intonation of the prayer of compassion.
This ginger baby and his mom were rescued from culling at a resort. May business owners be kind and wise to all sentient beings, not just to the ones that can talk and pay.
Even the more nervous kitties stood their ground, calmly facing us as we spoke softly to them.

And the kitties in hiding would have felt our goodwill, for the whole shelter was bathed in a golden afternoon light when our mission was completed.

After the shelter, we stopped by a cafe for some needed hydration & reflection. The cafe was located in a garden nursery with very strong balinese landscape features.

We took pictures with the balinese stone carvings of dancers and frangipani, and the Rainbow showed up to join us. Of course there are scientific and technical explanation for its appearance in the photos. But we were thrilled with the unexpectedness of it all, as if we had been bestowed some divine blessings even as we were simply having fun.

The Rainbow is a much loved symbol in many cultures. It is ever present even if we’re not consciously seeking it.

When I got home later in the evening I checked a text that was sent from Nepal during our time at the shelter.

The text came with a picture.

“Lisa, what’s this?” Reena texted. I lost this turquoise earring in the hills of Hatibaan. We searched outside and inside of Reena’s car. Her driver nearly took the car seats apart. But the earring refused to show. Now months later, it appeared.

It showed my Nepali host, Reena, holding on her palm, one half of the turquoise earrings that matched the necklace I wore today. I had lost that earring last December in Nepal.

And just this morning I was wondering if I would ever see the missing half of my earrings again.

The surprise emergence of a little turquoise after being lost for months seemed to be showing me that what is spoken or thought of with love can never be completely lost.

And this thought encourages me to dedicate whatever remaining time and energy I have to seemingly “lost” causes.

It also strengthens my habit of performing deeds of relief in the name of people and animals that have left this earthly realm.

Like the Rainbow that arches over us, we are constantly held and supported by the sacred presence of those we love.

“Run to the Rescue with Love, and Peace will follow.” – River Phoenix, the late brother of Joachim Phoenix.

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