Monthly Archives: December 2021

Meet Happi

Heading into the Christmas week, we emailed the coordinator at the animal shelter offering to take another dog before Christmas. We were given the choice of two dogs. One was another pit bull who would have been a lot of fun. The other was described as a new dog who was very shy and having a difficult time at the shelter. We took the second dog, Happi.

Happi was fearful from the moment we met him. It took three of us to get him in the car. He didn’t fight us; he was just resistant. Once home, he began circling the kitchen table endlessly. We never thought he’d stop. He was overly alert and spooked easily. By Christmas Eve, the pace of circling had slowed. He began to lie down behind my wife‘s chair during meals. He also started to make brief excursions into the living room.

By Christmas, the circling was almost gone. Happi began to lie down on the living room floor and play with toys. Unfortunately, he remains hyper vigilant and startles easily. We hope with time he learns to trust us as well as others. Meanwhile, it’s made for an unforgettable Christmas.

Christmas by Candlelight

Last weekend, my wife and I met up with my sister’s family at Old Sturbridge Village in Massachusetts. This living history museum portrays life in an agricultural town in the 1830’s. For Christmas, they allow evening visits and have the paths lit by candles and small electric bulbs where open flames may prove a problem. I’ll share more photos over the weekend.

The Booster Blitz

The other pasttime that has taken my attention from photography has been volunteer work with the United Way. This was me yesterday at a statewide effort to get people vaccinated termed The Booster Blitz. We aided doctors and nurses in giving adult boosters and pediatric first and second doses in Nashua. There was a great turnout. Many of the staff wore festive chothes and we had Christmas music playing.

Meet Gucci

There is a reason I haven’t been taking as many photographs lately. My wife and I are volunteers with our local animal shelter. We are a home for foster dogs. This is Gucci our first dog.

She came to us mid-September. She’s eight years old and arrived at the shelter after her owner passed away. She’d been there five month before coming here. They placed her with us because she was getting stressed living at the shelter. We have no other pets which was a perfect fit for Gucci.

We kept her close to home the first week and then gradually began taking more walks. She loved going to a local summer camp on a lake near our home. It’s amazing how quickly we established routines that included three walks a day and lots of play time. Hence the reason for fewer photos.

Gucci was adopted on Thursday. She now has a forever home. I thought it would be sad and it was. But if you could have seen the look on her new owners face when we met up at the shelter for the adoption. This big guy with a bushy beard was like a little kid. Gucci happily got in the car with him. A fried said that she though Gucci liked it at our house. She did, but she likes it whereever she is loved.

And yes, we are waiting for our next new friend.

Hopes and Dreams

New York City Aug 28-30, 2021 Photographs by Christopher OKeefe

This is my favorite image from the tour of the abandoned hospital on Ellis Island. Imagine an immigrant arriving after a long journey. They are in New York Harbor ready to begin a new life only to be quarantined in the hospital. They can sense freedom but are not yet there. Many would leave here to enjoy a life in the United States. Some would be returned to their homeland.