Saturday, December 19, 2009

Journey's Hope for Hope

      Oblivious to the wind chill, heat, rain, snow and holiday preparations they travel. There are no brats, hamburgers, nachos, grills or beer when they meet and they have no team colors. They travel the miles up and down the interstates and back roads to pick up and deliver their cargo. Unlike the postal service their hours are not set and their deliveries require 24/7 care and handling. Their work has no 401k, no paycheck, no benefits or time off. They go when called sacrificing their weekends, holidays and time to rest from their full time jobs. The caravans of cars, SUVs, vans, Jeeps and trucks rendezvous at rest stops, mall parking lots and strangers’ homes. Some are identified only by an email describing their car, what they will be wearing and the time of their arrival. Others have done this before and exchange the greetings of old friends. There are no photographers, no cheering crowds or applause when the exchange is successfully made. The thought of such recognition would never occur to them, it is what they do.
      For some, it may be a once in a life time encounter with the cargo which lasts only a few hours or sometimes a night. For others the exchange of the cargo may begin a journey that spans a lifetime. Each traveler is a single link in the chain of life and hope dotting the highways day after day rescuing dogs. The rescues take place at shelters where the time for adoption has expired, puppy mills or dog auctions where they have one last chance to live if they are sold, sometimes for less than a dollar, before they are killed. The links come from all walks of life, backgrounds, rescue groups and volunteers forged by the steel of compassion. With each exchange the links are connected and the chain extends the hope that their precious cargos will find their forever home and know forever the love and sacrifice that transported them. Hope for hope, the chain of life.