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Sunday, March 6, 2016

The Value of Things

Sometimes I run across things on my walk that strike me as beautiful -- found objects scattered across my path like gifts from above. Each of them tells a story, and sometimes the story is a sad one. Yesterday, not too far from a spent pine cone, a feather was waving in the breeze.

The feather was one of many scattered along my path, so I surmised that it spelled out the death of its owner.

Further down the path, I found the tip of a pine branch, with cones and needles still attached. Someone or some thing had cut it cleanly from its source, leaving a very decorative trinket lying on the ground.

Childishly, I took joy in these little treasures scattered across my path. I imagined that they held great value, and so I gathered them all up and presented them to Bow on my return.

Bow, however, is much more a grown up than I am. He took one look at my treasures and determined that they were not of any value whatever. One by one he returned them to me, even the feather. And then he spelled:  תני לי אוכל "Give me food."

I went and fixed his supper. A big red Jonathan apple is something Bow holds as valuable.

He understands the market value of a banana.

And he takes great joy in spooning out his plain yogurt.

Life is good as long as there is good food, companionship and fresh air. A little sunshine goes a very long way.

Everything else is quite secondary. Yes, Bow has magazines to read and videos to watch. He enjoys lounging in the outer pen, when the weather is fine. He takes interest in the games the dogs play. But he knows that there is no intrinsic value in a feather or a pine cone, and he thinks I am quite silly when I pretend there is. "Can you eat it?" he seems to ask. "Can you sell it? No. Then it's just nonsense."

Someday soon maybe I will grow up, too.


  1. I loved the branch with the little pine cones on it and the feather, Aya! I am always interested in the owners of the feathers and I also love discovering 'treasures' when I'm out hiking. It's almost like getting a glimpse into a secret world where animals wonder about and do super-secret stuff when we're not looking. Bow likes food - food is good too! ;-)

    1. Hi, Kathy. Good to have you back! Yes, it is like a tantalizing bit of news from the secret lives of animals that we are not privy to, when we find these little clues.