My current friends know about my passion for tigers, but what you may not know is that I was passionately interested in wolves years before I ever got to be close to a tiger. I became a wolf sponsor at Wolf Park in 1987. But as Wolf Park grew from a tiny shoestring operation into an internationally known facility with hundreds of visitors per day, I was less and less able to connect. I'd almost stopped visiting, and then I started volunteering at EFRC and it was very hard to find time to get over there. I let my sponsorship lapse when I was unemployed, since I couldn't afford it and I wasn't taking advantage of it anyway.
But this weekend, I wasn't going to EFRC. Because I'm uncomfortable with strangers, I've pigeonholed myself as someone who doesn't deal with visitors, in my own mind and in the minds of the EFRC folks. This weekend there were major events scheduled for both Saturday and Sunday, which meant that they would fit feeding cats in way early in the morning, and the rest of the day would be mostly people-herding. So Rebecca told me that I should not plan on coming in, and I didn't get an email that said differently.
Combine this extreme rarity in my life, an open Sunday, with the fact that I've been re-reading ElfQuest online, and it makes sense that I ended up driving to Indiana today after all, but in a slightly different direction and not getting up so early. I went to see the wolves, plus bonus coyotes and foxes.
Wolves are soul-wrenchingly beautiful. My house is full of images of wolves, but seeing them with my own eyes and hearing them sing with my own ears is still magical. Against the pain of seeing them is the pain of not being able to touch them. Wolf Park is also home to 3 foxes. Foxes don't command the awe that a large predator must, but they make up for it with "aww", and they are very beautiful in their own right.