Library Diva's Guide to Volunteering…











About 3 miles from my house, buried in some tall trees and vegetation is a small graveyard, with civil war vets and other vets buried there. A scouting group that I know of is righting the headstones with cement and sand, clearing the debris and marking the grave sites on the web for genealogy buffs to find ancestors.

Of all weekends, I thought today might be a good day to check on their progress and show my support. The road to the graveyard runs along side a rather large creek that feeds into a river that runs through town. It’s winding and has quite a bit of trees and bushes along the road. With all the rain we’ve had everything seems extra green, and with all the storms we’ve had, there are lots of sticks, limbs and debris scattered along the road.

My love and I were driving toward the graveyard when we saw something strange up ahead…it took a while for us to figure where it fell in the animal, vegetable, mineral category. It was a rather large turtle and it was trying to cross the road…

My love slowed to a stop and put on the hazzards. I jumped out and began to find a way to assist it in it’s journey without it becoming road splat. It looked like it had just begun it’s journey, trying to cross to the other side. I wondered how I could help it along. It was pretty big and looked pretty heavy. I tapped its back end with my foot and it scootched a little faster. I thought that might be the way to do it, so I took my foot again and tried to move it along another foot. Out of no where, it’s head stretched out which seemed to be 5 feet long and its jaws with it’s pointy snapping mouth started snapping. It spun around on a dime, jaws open, neck extended, eyes beady…!

We did a stare off for what seemed like an eternity. It spun around again, snapped at me extending it’s powerful jaws as if to say, “I dare you to kick my butt again…”

As if I had just robbed a bank, I ran back to the vehicle and shouted “DRIVE DRIVE DRIVE!” My love floored it, swerving to miss the sharp jaws as it lurched for our tires…

About a 1/2 hour later, on the way back along the same road, it was no where in site. I’m sure it made it, I have no doubt that it made it…

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{May 23, 2011}   friends of all kinds…

One of our volunteers, Eleanor,  took several months off to take care of her constant companion and friend, Max. Max had trouble getting around, had several surgeries, and needed constant care. I checked in with her periodically to make sure she wasn’t wearing herself out as a caregiver and she said she’d do what needed to be done to make sure Max was being cared for, not in so much pain and to ensure that Max knew that he was loved.

Right before Christmas, I got the call from her that Max had passed away. She was heartbroken. I sent her a card and told her that no one could have had a more special friend to care for him while he was ill then her. They were good friends.

Around February, Eleanor decided that she needed her mind on something else, and that she needed to be busy again so Eleanor came back 1 day a week. We sat in my office and chatted and laughed about Max. How even though he was arthritic, he would still be able to crawl up into her lap. How he’d put his cold nose on her cheek when she fell asleep in her chair…how he slopped water everywhere when he drank…

…what?…oh, I’m sorry, I thought I mentioned it earlier…Max was her black lab. Her big baby, her constant friend and companion.

I had another volunteer who’s son moved out and when he moved was unable to take his black lab puppy. Already in some financial hardship, this volunteer noticed a bin I had set out for dog food for the WALOP (We All Love Our Pets) for Meals on Wheels and the Pet Food Bank that our local Humane Society sponsors. He explained that he and his wife just fell in love with “that little rascal” and he’s brought such joy to their house, but he’s eating more than they are now.

Eleanor saw the bin outside my office and asked about it. I explained what it was for and faithfully, every week she’s brought in dog food. When I told her about the lab puppy, she’s earmarked all of her donations “for the man with the little max”.

She’s not ready yet for another dog, it will take time, but for now, she’s taking care and loving another dog, even if its not sitting in her lap.



et cetera
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