I have been struck down with an Autumn cold - caught from Captain Butterfly. So my blog is going to get even more Diary of a Nobody than it already is. I could list my cold medications - and if only I had two friends called Cummings and Gowing as Mr.Pooter did, I could list their comings and goings.
There are two wonderful animal rescue videos in the Mail onLine today. One is a puppy rescued from a shrinking sandbank by a passing canoeist, and the other is a baby elephant rescued from a pit, and returned to its distressed and relieved mother.
I hope Jehovah will bless and keep all the rescuers. But it made me so sad to think of what I was taught as a young Catholic convent schoolgirl - that animals "don't matter", as "they don't have souls". Fortunately I was taught very differently at home, by my parents, that animals do matter, and that we should care for them and be kind to them. Both my parents were country children - my father grew up in the fields and forests of Belarus. And wild forests they were - and perhaps still are. The fear of what was in those childhood forests came back to my father in nightmares at the end of his life. There was a time when I had to tackle a bear in his bedroom. My mother was from a small village in Lancashire - from the wonderful world of Nabbs Cottage, our childhood paradise.
Then also there was the religion of science which taught us that animals don't have feelings, only instincts.
How much cruelty has been and is being perpetrated because of these ideas?
It wasn't till I was nearly forty that I found out what the Inspired Scriptures say about animals. Two Jehovah's Witnesses called at my door and, among other things, they showed me this:
"I, even I, have said in my heart with regard to the sons of mankind that the [true] God is going to select them, that they may see that they themselves are beasts. For there is an eventuality as respects the sons of mankind and an eventuality as respects the beast, and they have the same eventuality. As the one dies, so the other dies; and they all have but one spirit, so that there is no superiority of the man over the beast, for everything is vanity. All are going to one place. They have all come to be from the dust, and they are all returning to the dust. " - Ecclesiastes 3:18-20
We are souls - "nephesh" - as are the animals, and we all die, and return to the dust of the ground from which we were created.
That is why the hope of the resurrection - the re-standing to life again - is so important. And I know even more forcefully now than I did at 40 how short life is! Its over before you know it. And what a short time we have to be with the people we love. Captain Butterfly and I met 45 years ago, and its gone so quickly. Just a moment in time.
The Channel is quite calm today, and grey, under a grey sky. Yesterday was a day of stormy seas, and wild waves.