21 March 2010

If Dogs Feel My Energy, Why Can't I?

On Saturday morning I went over to my friend Tom's house to watch the Academy Awards. We have a 10-year tradition of watching the awards together and since I was in Chiang Mai for this year's, he very kindly copied a DVD for us to watch.

I've known Tom for ages but can't say we were especially close. He presents a pretty crusty/cynical exterior. Of course underneath he's extremely kind and caring, but insecure me often felt threatened and put off by his outer shell and sarcastic comments. Mainly I visited his house for his huge annual Thanksgiving parties and our own Oscars mornings.

A typical Bangkok soi dog
If I were an abandoned soi dog, I'd definitely experience Tom's warm and cuddly side. He's rescued nine over the past years and given them complete control over his heart and home. (Seven are still alive.) Over the years of their lifetimes and my Oscar visits, not one dog has ever done anything other than bark its head off or growl at me from the moment I ring the doorbell at the outside gate until I leave.

Oscar watching takes place in Tom's bedroom, the most effectively air conditioned room in his rented 1970s house. In the past I always fought with the mutts to carve out a space on the large bed covered in dog hair. (I never wear black and always bring a clothes brush.) Whenever I'd get up to pee or readjust my shawl (I'm not used to air conditioning) they'd ramp up the barking at instantly take over my spot on the bed.

You could wonder why I put up with all this discomfort and canine abuse. Well, I'm a sucker for tradition, especially in ever-changing Bangkok. And Tom has a steel trap mind for entertainment trivia and makes fabulously insightful—or appropriately snide—comments about people's clothes, what they wore last year, who they're dating etc. Plus he can name 99.9% of the faces on screen whereas I'm lucky if I recognize 30% of them! Deep down, I loved watching Oscar with Tom.

I haven't been to Tom's house since before starting Qigong. I rolled up yesterday at 9 a.m. with my bag of J.W. Marriott pastries (for him) and rang the doorbell. The predictable cacophony of barking ensured as the dogs stampeded out of the house to the gate. And then the barking stopped. A row of dog snouts protruded ouf from under the gate. Tom opened it and instead of barking their heads off, the dogs all surrounded me, jumping up, nuzzling and licking my hands!

It was the same throughout the 5-hour visit. I still had to carve out my space on the bed, but this time the dogs didn't mind and actually made room for me. (Fortunately not all seven are on the bed simultaneously!) Several put their heads in my lap or stuck theirs heads in my face demanding some ear scratching.

HELLO......is this a concrete example of an energy shift or what!!!!! Honestly their reactions didn't come as a total surprise because last fall my friend Bob's three former soi dogs also stopped their aggressive barking at me. Funny.....that was just around the time Tom and I got much closer too.

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