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Goodies-To-Go
"Life is the flower for which love is the honey.
"
~
Victor Hugo
... Get Inspired Here Every Day

February 6, 2006

Here's Today's Special Tune [On/Off]: "LOVE IS ALL AROUND" Get Free Music Downloads
— If you cannot hear today's song, simply: Enter Here to open media window. —

Those Who Love YOU

If anyone should hurt you and say a thing unkind,
Remember what I tell you, and keep these things in mind;
For every 1 who makes you cry, there are 3 who make you smile,
That smile will last a long, long time, and the tear a LITTLE while!
If someone says a thing that's cruel, don't let it get to you —
There's so much good about you, and your faults are very few;
Don't let someone who hates the world cause you to hate it too,
For behind the cloud's a golden sun and a sky that's bright and blue!

So if a certain someone should act a certain way ...
Just think of THOSE WHO LOVE YOU and don't let it ruin your day.


~ Author Unknown


INSPIRATIONAL MUSIC SLIDESHOW

(Please allow a few seconds for these images to load ... they're truly worth the wait.)

Tortoise and Hippo Slideshow

THE TORTOISE & THE HIPPO

Heavy rains washed a family of hippos down the river and into the ocean off the coast of Africa. Residents of the village of Malindi tried in vain to get the hippos to move back up the estuary. When the Tsunami struck Kenya's coast, Owen was wallowing with his herd near the mouth of the Sabaki River. Too small to escape the waves with his family, he was stranded on a coral reef. The villagers rescued Owen with fishing nets and conservationists at Lafarge Eco Systems decided to transport Owen to Haller Park in nearby Mombasa, Kenya. There the hippo immediately ran to hide behind what looked like a huge boulder. But the 'rock' was actually Mzee, a 130-year-old male Giant Aldabran Tortoise, whose name means 'Old Man' in Swahili. The tortoise at first resisted, but a persistent Owen kept following him everywhere and tried to sleep next to him.

Tortoises are not known for affectionate or social behavior, nevertheless, Mzee now follows Owen around, nudges him to go for walks, initiates play in the water, and even stretches his neck out so Owen can give him a lick. There has been growing evidence of physical communication between the pair, with Owen nibbling Mzee's back feet to get him to walk in a desired direction. The two have even developed a sort of vocal communication of their own. The vocalizations are not the honking of hippos or the grunts and hisses of tortoises, but rather a soft whimpering that emanates from one and is mimicked by the other.

In the year since the tsunami struck, the bond between hippo and tortoise has strengthened, and now the two are inseparable. They rouse each other for meals, spend hours wallowing in the pond together, and snuggle up side by side each night. According to Haller Park staff, Owen behaves more like a tortoise than a hippo. He eats tortoise food, such as leaves and carrots, and ignores the grasses that hippos normally consume. He sleeps at night, not during the day as wild hippos do. And he doesn't respond to hippo calls.

Owen, who weighed an estimated 660 pounds (300 kilograms) when he arrived at the park, was two-thirds the size of Mzee. He is now twice Mzee's size and still growing. Owen's already quite strong and could injure Mzee at any moment. He's very childlike in his behavior and as he gets older he will get rougher. Owen could weigh more than 6,000 pounds (2,700 kilograms) when he is grown. Mzee is not a flexible animal — he could be injured. Conservation workers plan to introduce Owen to a 13-year-old female hippo named Cleo in Spring, 2006. How Mzee and Owen will react to the presence of Cleo and a subsequent separation is unknown, but if they cannot live without each other, some sort of accommodations will be made.

See quarry rehabilitation solutions,
the Haller Park Caretaker's Diary,
more amazing photographs,
and
a Free Screensaver at:

OWEN & MZEE
IN LAFARGE ECO SYSTEMS HERE

Visit the OWEN & MZEE PICTURE POND & MORE

(Contributed by Mary Lynn who lives in Peoria, Illinois)

TRUE STORY VERIFICATION: http://www.snopes.com/photos/animals/hippo.asp


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