Commodity of Silence

Last night I was in desperate need of a dog whisperer. You know those folks who have some special talents that calm horses down. I think there was a show called the The Horse Whisperers or a movie or something with Robert Redford if I remember right.

Anyway, for the second night in a row there was an all out dog fight. Yes, a dog fight you read that right. It was around midnight and it lasted close to two hours! I guess I heard the main event because the night before it was only 30 minutes or so.

Seriously, I’m not sure if was a bone or body they were fighting over, but it was insanely mad. As I laid there in bed once again frustrated because I was woken up I wondered why no one was yelling at these dogs to stop. The yelping, squealing, and barking. So much barking. Oyeee!

There are so many stay dogs here. Literally they are everywhere you go. I’m sure many were pets at one time, but then the family has to make a choice of feeding themselves or the dog. The pet then becomes the stray. And so there are many strays who then breed amongst themselves adding to the already forgotten animal population.

These dogs are unhealthy and quite mangy looking; diseased, shabby, worn, scabby, hairless, you name it I’ve seen it and the dogs have it. I’ve seen several with a leg missing, I’m sure that dog has a story to tell the other dogs.

You see dogs digging and eating in trash which is just about everywhere you look and go. No one cares for these animals and not many people pet them either. You see them running around chasing one another, cars, and people too. It doesn’t matter if you are in town or further out in a village there are stay dogs everywhere. Another physical sign of poverty.

As annoyed as I was with my disrupted sleep I realized this is everyday life for the people of Piura. Therefore, I’ve come to a deeper appreciation for the silence that is easily accessible at home. There literally is no silence here between the thin walls, the traffic, the guy on the bull horn selling who knows what, and the dogs – it’s never quiet. Adoration is not even quiet. The noise has been a big adjustment for me as I thirst for silence and it’s tough to come by here in Piura.

Maybe one gets use to the noise over time, I’m not sure. I do know sleep and silence is essential to the spiritual life and for these folks here I’m certain they lack quality sleep between the the thin walls, the noise and the entire family in one bed. Even quality sleep and silence is commodity the poor is not privileged too.

It many sound strange to many reading this, but right now I’m most looking forward to my prayer spot at home, a morning cup of coffee and sitting in total silence to start my day.

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