Apifera Farm - where art, story, animals & woman merge. Home to artist Katherine Dunn

Apifera Farm is a registered 501 [c][3]. All images are ©Katherine Dunn.

Monday, June 29, 2020

The gift of the 103 year old...the most meaningful of gifts

The birthday boy shows his pony bells through the window
There was a very special birthday gathering at Chase Point this week. One of the residents, David  turned 103 years old with his daughters and family members gathered outside a large picture window as David sat inside, looking out. Due to the restrictions and CDC guidelines due to the COVID 19 virus even family members can not visit inside.

But the birthday boy had another special guest–Harry the llama.

David loves animals and back when he was 101 he first visited Apifera Farm where he met all the animals including the llamas. He was able to visit again when he was 102. But this year, due to the virus everyone is in lockdown. When I heard David’s birthday was coming up, I immediately wanted to bring Harry to the gathering and contacted David’s daughter  to confirm a Llama Birthday Window Walk with Harry.

I was going to try to do a daisy chain for his neck, but opted to decorate him in bells [these were gifted to us last year by a follower who had collected them during her many travels.] Now I realize picking the bells was one of those divine moments.

When David saw Harry’s bells he was delighted. He started to talk about the pony bells he had hanging in his room. It’s hard to hear through the window,  but the staff translated, and his daughter explained to me how he loved his pony bells. The staff went to his room and brought the pony bells down so everyone could see them through the window. David had found them long ago in his travels to India and where ever he lived he always took his pony bells. Then he asked the staff to take them outside so I could see them closer, and I was thrilled to ring them and show Harry. Through it all, David sat inside smiling through the window watching his favorite pony bells being rung. Minutes later, another staff person came out and said David wanted me and Harry to have the bells.

Verklempt moment.

I just welled up with tears, I looked at him through the window and patted my heart with my hand, and he mimicked me. It was probably the most caring, beautiful and most meaningful gift I have ever received.

As Harry and I  left with our new special bells, the family was able to visit more with David outside, under social distance guidelines. There were no hugs allowed or birthday cake, but there were smiles from David.

My birthday wish for David is he gets to be with his family up close...soon...very soon. And when we all get through this lock down, I want to get David out to the farm, and we will ring those bells.

And a postscript...It had slipped my mind...but this was also Birdie's birthday. I know she was present. She probably helped me find Harry.

Harry looks in at the birthday boy

David meeting Birdie the llama when he was 101
Katherine wearing the pony bells with honor

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Thank you for reading! The farm and my art/writing keep me hopping, so might not respond immediately. Thank you for understanding. ~Katherine & Apifera ~