Dogs & Politics

  

Dogs & Politics

A few weeks ago, San Francisco former Mayor and currently San Francisco Chronicle columnist Willie Brown wrote in his column that when he checked which government organizations were closed as a result of the partial shutdown, he could not find one.  The reason was probably that he does not have a dog and even if he had one, he did not take him for a walk to Fort Funston. When we arrived there on January 1st, we came upon a very long line of cars parked along the freeway. At first I was surprised, thinking that the parking lot was full.  What turned out, the park was closed.  Fortunately for us, someone pulled out and I was able to squeeze in my car.  We have been going there for many years, even when we didn’t have dogs.  It is one of the parks where dogs can be off the leash, and Max loves it, and the park is a beautiful spot overlooking the ocean in San Francisco.

You can walk on the paved road or down at the beach (if you do not mind the steep stairs).  It is also a favorite spot for hand gliders, and a great place to not only photograph dogs, though I have one image from there in my book, “42 Encounters with Dog Lovers”.  Close to the parking lot there is a path to the observation deck, and I noticed a sign describing the park’s history there. Online I found out that in 1901, scarcely any living American was unfamiliar with who Frederick Funston was. In 1906, he did much to keep law and order in San Francisco and to provide relief to sufferers of the great earthquake.  Mr. Funston, who was born in 1865 in New Carlisle, OH and died in 1917 in San Antonio, TX, was a Major General in the United States Army.  He was nicknamed Fighting Fred Funston, and fought in the Spanish-American War and the Philippine-American War.  He received the Medal of Honor and was buried in the San Francisco National Cemetery.

Now you know, but why should you care?  This can be said about anyone or anything.  Why should we care about issues which led to closing the park and the money the U.S. Government spent in the past on building the Fort to protect our country during the two World Wars?  Dogs do not care.  Why should they?  Somehow they know that we, the human being, just pick up their poop.  And as soon as other humans will resolve their political issues, the park will be open again and will be cleaned.

P.S. These four images I wanted to share with you are my take of the park.  The only dog I included is a photo of Max, since this image is a reminder of the cover of my book
“42 Encounters with Dog Lovers”, which you can buy on Amazon.com and Encounterspublishing.com.

Please do not forget to enjoy and share it with a friend.

Manny Signature

How and Why to Express Gratitude

  

How and Why to Express Gratitude
Happy 2019!

A few weeks ago I wrote about one of the reasons that my wife Elfa and I have enjoyed our lives together for over fifty years was thanks to an expression of mutual gratitude.  As I pointed out a week ago, the development of any habit takes time and repetition.  Therefore, I practice having the habit of an attitude of gratitude every day.  Every morning after I just wake up, I recite the Jewish traditional prayer: Modeh (Modah for women), I give thanks before you, King living and eternal, for you have returned within me my soul with compassion; abundant is your faithfulness.”  This small act sets the tone for me for the rest of the day.  After all, there are so many people and things in my life that I am grateful for.

Dr. Deepak Chopra pointed out that Gratitude opens the door tothe power, the wisdom, thecreativityof the universe.”  I found this quote in the book Mind.  A Scientific Guide to Who You Are, How You Got That Way, and How to Make the Most of Itby Patricia Daniels published by the National Geographic.  In the book, there is a chapter called “Gratitude”, which starts, When you have a responsive and understanding partner, you almost certainly feel grateful.  The emotion of gratitude is another powerful factor in building the bonds between two people.  Even outside of a close relationship, gratitude can reinforce positive action within a group and help a troubled person find strength in adversity. From a practical standpoint, gratitude is simply useful.  Its a benefit detector.  Youre grateful when you get a gift, or receive some sort of benefit that you can link to a specific giver.  Gratitude intensifies if you believe the gift was costly to the giver (whether in money, time, or effort); if the gift was personally valuable and well chosenA spontaneous, out-of-the-blue present can be the best gift of all.  In each case, were grateful not so much for the gift or benefit, but because the act of giving shows that peopleare thinking about us, that they care about us, and that the world is not such a bad place.”

On January 2nd before going to the office, I stopped at CVS and bought a number of notebooks.  In one, I am going to write my daily reflections and what I am grateful for. The other large notebook with 200 pages is going to be filled with the names of clients whom I plan on helping in 2019.  For me, one of the greatest expressions of gratitude is to say “Thank you” to those who entrusted me with their mortgage needs.  This is why I give my books as gifts with gratitude to my clients.  You can follow my example and buy “42 Encounters with Dog Lovers“.  As the article pointed out, “A spontaneous, out-of-the-blue present can be the best gift of all.

P.S. I want to share with you these four images of the last sunset on the last day of last year, with my gratitude.

Make it a great year, enjoy and share with a friend!

Manny Signature