Saturday, May 31, 2014

Project Bean
By Windy

Frances looks as downtrodden
as poor Bean here, but the truth
is that she couldn't be more
pleased that we're able care
for this little guy while we do
our time in the Guaymas
boatyard--more on that later.
A few days ago I found myself kneeling on a grimy sidewalk in downtown Guaymas. Pedestrian traffic flowed around me. I was frozen, contemplating my next move. I had pinned to the concrete a writhing, snapping, ball of filth. Do I release him? I don’t want a puppy. Mike certainly doesn’t. And clearly this puppy, its mouth agape, eyes rolling in terror, doesn’t want us. Yet releasing him meant he would die, either today—in a panicked getaway through the dense traffic—or tomorrow or the next. And so there I remained, kneeling on a Guaymas sidewalk.

About all the uncared for animals we come across, I have always told my girls, if a situation came up where we could truly help, we would. But misguided help can harm, and at the moment I was pretty sure the scales had tipped slightly toward harm. Not only was I frightening the little guy practically to death, I had created a situation in which his immediate risk was greater than if I’d just left him alone. The seconds passed and the puppy’s struggles weakened. My own internal struggle, both moral and practical, suspended me in thought. Then he gave up his fight and lay there limp, emaciated ribs heaving, resigned to his fate. That resignation is what did it. In that moment the scales in my mind tipped to help.

Now it was just a matter of carrying him. But how? He was light as a feather, but he was beyond dirty; even at arm’s length I could see fleas and ticks crawling all over him. A little furry vessel of potential disease. I pulled a sarong out of my pack and wrapped and wrapped until all but his head was covered. Then I picked up my parcel.

Eleanor and Frances were waiting for me a block away with our friends from Dawn Treader, everyone wondering what was taking me so long. As I neared the group I noted their astonishment and concern and I gave them a smile and wave. “Do you remember how I always say, if there is a time when we can truly help, we will? Well this is one of those times.”
The girls and I gave Bean multiple baths, removing
lots of fleas and ticks. Then we brought him to the
vet for de-worming and a check-up. The little wild
street dog is in fair shape for how he started out, but
does weigh only half what he should and is only
slowly learning to trust humans. Note his broken tail.

Here Frances plays with some normal, happy puppies
at one end of the yard. Note Bean in the
background. We plan to build his strength, get him
fixed, and then find him a home.


  1. That made me tear up and boy, do I want to adopt him... if only... I'm glad you helped him.

  2. Hi Kyra and Rick! Oh I so wish you could adopt him. It's been such a joy watching him come out of his shell, wag his tail and play, like a puppy should. Hope you guys are doing well! Windy

  3. Why not keep him as a cruising dog? He's super cute, and he'd probably be really good at letting you know if anyone comes along.

    1. This comment has been removed by the author.

    2. We'd consider it if we weren't planning to cross the Pacific next year.

  4. Both those faces say "Can I keep Her/Him?" We sail with a 65 # dog and make it work. It's tough at times but we love having him aboard. Currently in Chiapas Marina Mexico.

    Karin, Joe and Jack the dog on Flyin Sideways.

    1. So true! And I have to admit, it's good having someone aboard who's never in a bad mood. -WR

  5. Oh Bean is wonderful...from his hopeful eyes down to his broken little black tail and those wild amazing fly-away bat ears. Love that guy. Love you Windy for bending down and breaking the wild, frantic scared will of an abused animal...and thank you for doing what so many won't, even when faced with it, and that is....the right thing. Our love and support to you in the boat yard with Bean and may all the days ahead be proving in that Willa Cather quote: When there is love, there are always miracles. From our rescues to with an extra helping of goodness to the wee one called Bean.

  6. This is from Zada:

    I'm sorry girls, I wish you could keep Bean but it was so kind you rescued little Bean just like we just rescued Yote and Juan. I hope we can see each other soon and please give a hug from me to Bean and I miss you so much and I hope we can play soon. Love, Zada

  7. Mike—That picture at the front of this blog of Frances and Bean is priceless. I'm glad we met you in La Paz with Basil and glad to see you're keeping up the good work of helping the animals.
    Chan McKearn


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