Bodhisattva – In Buddhism, a person who has attained Enlightenment, but who postpones Nirvana in order to help others to attain Enlightenment.
Guan Yin – Goddess/God of mercy, who sees and hears the cry from the human world.
I’m working on a new project. Painting Kaiserslautern on my new iPad. I’m stoked.
Reputation? Google Joan Jett.
… and boy are my arms tired.
Took a painting weekend last week. Attended Beverly Never’s painting workshop. Always learning something new. Weather was bad so, other than a brief post-lunch walk, we stayed indoors and painted from photos of the German landscape. I’m in a rut. Time for a change.
Working on the Celebrity Mercury back in 2008. Some time off, but not enough. Drew the view from the front deck of the ship, just outside my cabin. Nice thing about the job – always a nice view.
These sensational news headlines got me thinking…
- Campers rescued after coyotes surround campsite
- Animal Control Looking For Coyotes That Surrounded Woman, Dogs
- I Shouldn’t Be Alive – Trapped and Surrounded by Coyotes
I thought… what the? I’ve been surrounded by coyotes, more than once. Really surrounded. I thought it was cool. Maybe I’m the one who’s nuts? Being surrounded by a herd of javelina and being face-to-face with a young mountain lion – those situations were a little more dicey. But my personal worst scare was when I came head to head with two very large Brahman bulls on open rangeland in Mexico. I gave them a wide berth, slowly. They were waaaay bigger than me.
Regardless, I was reminded of when I was surrounded by coyotes. I was surrounded on one occasion for the same reason many people are “surrounded”, because I had food. I was in college, and was working on a biological survey of wild rodent populations in the deserts of southern Arizona. I normally worked with with a biology graduate student, but I was alone this dark night. Almost 200 traps were set out (the mice were caught alive, we recorded their vital statistics, then let them go). Unfortunately for the mice, the weather was unseasonably cool. I began to check the traps at 11pm, and many of the trapped mice were in a state of torpor (a hibernation-like state to conserve energy). What to do?
Not to worry. This has happened before. When I came upon a torpid mouse, I put him or her in one of my pockets until he or she warmed up and started to wiggle around. Quite amusing. I wonder if it was the mouse equivalent of waking up and having a “Where am I? I don’t remember drinking that much” feeling. When the mice were re-animated enough, I took them back near where I picked them up and let them go.
Enter the coyotes. I heard coyotes barking earlier in the night; quite common and I thought nothing of it. But after about a half hour into my two plus hour check, I noticed that I keep hearing noises just beyond the range of my headlamp. I became a bit more vigilant. There were creatures out there that could do me in quite easily. Eventually, I began to catch glimpses of coyotes flashing by in the darkness; one, two, or was that three? They were running circles around me. I was literally surrounded!
Coyotes, not a mountain lion, I was okay, I said to myself. I’m not sure what happened, but all of a sudden it dawned on me why I was so popular with the coyotes on this night. Seeing coyotes was not a big deal, but having them stick aournd was a bit unusual. The reason they followed me – I was setting down mice that were fairly easy targets in their less-than-alert states. I was potentially serving dinner to the coyotes. Duh.
So I started keeping the mice in my pockets a little longer to make sure they were fully awake. Some became quite fiesty, epecially when there was more than one mouse in a pocket! Then I placed them near a hole or under thick brush. I felt sorry for them, but I also did not want to lose any future data. Desert mice can live quite long lives, in mouse years. I didn’t want to lose one to a coyote. My “two hour” check lasted almost until dawn. The coyotes stayed with me until the first hint of sunlight. It was quite an interesting experience; a big dog-and-mouse game.
So I was surrounded by coyotes, but I didn’t make the headlines. Sigh.
This little church in Landstuhl, Germany has seen better days, at least architecturally. I’ve walked around it before, trying to get a good angle. Around and around. This is the best view. The problem is that the nave of the church was torn down because it was in unrepairable shambles. But the church is so small that the nave was about half of the church. It is still pretty from this angle and it’s interior is charming.
The “renovation” was done relatively recently, some time in the 1800s. That’s recent considering the church was built about 1300 and that there are records of graves in the church yard, from a previous wooden church, at least a couple of hundred years before that!
I took a walk around the old part of Landstuhl Germany yesterday. I noticed that it’s full of old buildings and other old stuff. Some of the old stuff was older than the buildings. For example, the remains of a Roman grave is from about the year 100, which is way older than the Old Chapel (Alten Kapelle). It was built about 1300. By comparison, St. Andreas Church is much newer. It was built in 1752.
I got some nice ideas for paintings. So I guess I have started another project: Old Landstuhl.
And if I say to you tomorrow. Take my hand, child, come with me.
It’s to a castle I will take you, …