Oodles and Oodles of Poodles

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A Poodle in the clouds.  But my poodles in the clouds were smaller.  There were a thousand of them at least and in a space as big as this cloud-poodle shows, there were about 150 of them.
A Poodle in the clouds. But my poodles in the clouds were smaller. There were a thousand of them at least and in a space as big as this cloud-poodle shows, there were about 150 of them.

The Photo that Got Away.

Have you heard some of the stories about the fish that got away? Some of those stories are true. Well, I had a thousand poodles in the clouds and they all got away.

Unfortunately, I did not have my camera handy on the day when a thousand poodles were romping among the altocumulus clouds stretching for miles beneath the plane’s wing on which I was on board and flying into Honolulu in October of 2010. Those poodles were moving spritely between rows of clouds and large white cloud-freighters with smoke stacks. The standard-size poodles -- some white, some grey -- mingled exuberantly with the miniature and toy-size poodles. Each was handsomely coiffed.

The sun creates values of shadows like few artists can.

I did have my camera in the overhead compartment, but there was a young woman to my left in the aisle seat. I hadn’t wanted to bother her as she had her computer open, a movie playing and a headset on. (I had asked the ticket agent at the Phoenix airport for an aisle seat. He told me, "You got it." He was busy and I'm sure he thought he had put me in an aisle seat.)

I've looked at clouds from both sides now.

These are not altocumulus clouds or at least they are not the kind and quality that were present the day of my poodle sightings.
These are not altocumulus clouds or at least they are not the kind and quality that were present the day of my poodle sightings.

Poodles, Jumping and Pouncing, All in Play

The poodles were getting ready to jump, dash and pounce. Their rambunctious posturing allowed the afternoon sun’s rays to bounce into pockets of the poodley coats, creating a dozen different values of shadow on each canine’s back, ears, tail and head. We were above all of the activity of these one thousand romping poodles.

The sky was a pale blue. I told myself I would paint the scene after I arrived home. I tried to capture the images in my mind, but everything kept changing. And I wondered how it was that there were no Chihuahuas or Pomeranians or Malamutes – my favorite dogs – and there were no mixed breeds – my even-more-favorite dogs. So I looked, on purpose, for Cocker Spaniels and Australian Shepherds. I looked for Goldendoodles. There were none. Not even one Goldendoodle. There were only poodles! I closed my eyes, reopened them and tried again to see some other breeds of dogs because -- being a logical person -- I figured it had to be my brain doing this and therefore my brain should be able to see some other kinds of dogs if I tell it to. There were still only poodles. There were standard poodles, standard poodle puppies, miniature poodles and their puppies and toy poodles. There was every imaginable happy posture and stance of these big and little poodles.

Off in the distant clouds were the big white ships built of steamy cloud, streaming along fast-moving canals in the skyway. Most of the ships were shaped like old-time freighters. Some were like the old Canadian Pacific ferry between Nanaimo and Vancouver, British Columbia years ago.

It was an amazing end to an otherwise routine flight between the mainland and Oahu that day in October, 2010. I will never forget it. I will also never be able to paint what I saw. I’ve tried and I cannot even come close. Yes, I think I should have bothered the young woman to let me by and then I could have reached up to get my camera. But I kept thinking the scene was going to disappear any moment. I didn’t want to miss an instant of it by getting up to reach my camera.

I’ve looked online the past couple of weeks to see if anyone has captured such a picture as the one I saw in the sky. I haven’t found any quite like it. Nothing nearly so grand, really. But I did discover a great website for people who like to photograph the images in the sky. The website is http://cloudappreciationsociety.org/

Cat in a Maui Sunrise. She's looking to the right.

Can you see the Feral Cat in the Sky?
Can you see the Feral Cat in the Sky? | Source
Sky Kitty.  See the similarity in stance to the Earth Kitty below. (Scroll down)
Sky Kitty. See the similarity in stance to the Earth Kitty below. (Scroll down)
Watching over the feral cats on Maui.
Watching over the feral cats on Maui.
Plain down-to-earth Kitty
Plain down-to-earth Kitty

How and Why did my Brain let me see a Thousand Poodles?

I think the human brain is awesome beyond description. I only use the word 'awesome' when I mean it literally. Apparently, from what I've read, even the smartest scientists cannot yet figure out all the workings and purposes of some of the areas of the human brain. The human brain is a mystery in many ways. And so, little unknowledgeable me wonders and tries to think how I could have seen what I saw and what brought it on.

My conclusions -- as I draw this hub out to a better word count -- were and still are that my brain treated me to a bit of a treat because I needed it. I had had a difficult time going to Arizona and then a difficult time having to leave Arizona and my grandchildren so soon.

The reason the trip over there to Arizona was difficult was because the purpose of my trip was to transport my daughter's family dog by plane. Our daughter and her family had moved from Maui to Arizona three months prior. Tika, their dog, stayed with us until the tarmac temperature would be low enough that a dog could be brought in to the Phoenix Airport. I forget the exact temperature it had to be -- before the airlines would accept a dog in the cargo area of the plane for transport.


Meet Tika.

Tika and another adopted dog, months after her arrival in Arizona.
Tika and another adopted dog, months after her arrival in Arizona.

Tika was home safely. It was party time.

Oh, how I dreaded the trip. The reason I dreaded the trip was I was so worried about Tika. Due to the fact there was only one particular airline we could use at that time of year which allowed the transport of dogs into Phoenix in October, I knew there would be a two-hour layover in Honolulu. Therefore, it would be a solid eleven hours from the time the airline people boarded her into the lower part of the plane and until we were able to get her out of her kennel and let her go visit the grass outside the Phoenix Airport. Eleven hours. I was looking pretty normal on that flight from Maui to Honolulu and then from Honolulu to Phoenix -- where we landed at midnight -- but I was not feeling normal. I was stressed to the max. One blessing I did appreciate, though, was while I was in the Honolulu Airport at the cafe, I could see the luggage handlers taking Tika's kennel, gently, and putting the kennel onto a moving set of shelves -- or something -- and transporting her to the next plane we were to get on. This was a giant relief to me because I had heard horror stories of people's animals being put on the wrong planes and ending up in Japan or Alaska. Seeing this through the window, up above the airport's tarmac, I felt so grateful to know Tika would be on the right plane. I only wished she could hear me and know I wasn't deserting her, Priscilla had not deserted her and everything would be fine in about seven more hours. She had seven more hours to go without any relief for her bladder.

Tika is a medium-sized dog. She's a brave girl. She made it through the eleven hours. She was ecstatic when she saw Priscilla, her pack leader, at midnight that night. Priscilla let her out, hugged her and soon took her outside to use the grass. Tika was too excited to care about using the grass. She held her bladder tightly for another two hours until we got to Priscilla's home -- Tika's new home -- way on the outskirts of town. If I'd known she could do that, I wouldn't have had such high blood pressure all the way there. I thought she was suffering. Well, how do we know she wasn't? She probably had been. The poor girl.

It's my thought or belief that my brain let me see all those poodles in the clouds as a bit of a gift. Yes, I realize they weren't really there, but the human brain is magnificently creative. My brain shadowed in all the right places in each cloud so I could see something beautiful as I finally began to relax. I was sad to have said goodbye to our family so soon, but relieved beyond words that Tika had been delivered safely to the person she loves the most on all the earth. I wouldn't pat myself on the back and say, 'Good job, Pamela' -- I just hadn't thought to do it, so my brain gave me a little party instead.

A hui hou.

Oodles and O-o-o-o-dles of Happy Poodles

Source
Public Domain.
Public Domain. | Source

I've Looked at Clouds From Both Sides Now -- Joni Mitchell

© 2011 Pamela Kinnaird W

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Comments 15 comments

Pamela Kinnaird W profile image

Pamela Kinnaird W 4 years ago from Maui and Arizona Author

Hi tillsontitan, good to know another cloud watcher. Thanks.


tillsontitan profile image

tillsontitan 4 years ago from New York

What a great 'cloud watching' hub! We always talk or write about cloud watching from the ground, this is a fresh perspective. Nicely done. Voted up.


Pamela Kinnaird W profile image

Pamela Kinnaird W 4 years ago from Maui and Arizona Author

dementedmom, thanks for stopping by.


dementedmom profile image

dementedmom 4 years ago from R.O.I.

i remember as a child, i used to be scared of those figures in the sky. i dunno why pretty much all the time i see monsters looking down on me, other times though i see dragons. i dont understand why when i was younger and even now although i have to say i dont see monsters or dragons all the time now.


Pamela Kinnaird W profile image

Pamela Kinnaird W 4 years ago from Maui and Arizona Author

Thank you muchly, Carolinemd21.


carolinemd21 profile image

carolinemd21 4 years ago from Close to Heaven

What a beautiful hub with gorgeous photos. I absolutely love Maui! Great imagination you have. Very creative thoughts.


Pamela Kinnaird W profile image

Pamela Kinnaird W 5 years ago from Maui and Arizona Author

Roberthewettsr, thanks for your comments.


ROBERTHEWETTSR profile image

ROBERTHEWETTSR 5 years ago from Louisville, Kentucky

I love watching the figures and scenes made by cumulus clouds in a summer sky. You write with great imagery and continuity. Robert


ROBERTHEWETTSR profile image

ROBERTHEWETTSR 5 years ago from Louisville, Kentucky

I, too, love to look at cloud formations and their ever changing scene. Thanks for this delightful visit to cloud heaven. Robert


Pamela Kinnaird W profile image

Pamela Kinnaird W 5 years ago from Maui and Arizona Author

Thank you, Nell. By the way, having read one of your hubs this morning, I was trying out a link you provided for submission of urls. I need to keep reading this kind of thing. Thanks.


Nell Rose profile image

Nell Rose 5 years ago from England

Hi, I love watching clouds and see so many shapes and animals, so I totally understand what you mean! I often lay on the grass and look up at all the lovely shapes, what a shame you didn't get your photo, I am sure you will be able to get it next time, cheers nell


Pamela Kinnaird W profile image

Pamela Kinnaird W 5 years ago from Maui and Arizona Author

Wayne Brown, thank you for your comments. I will try to find the poem you have referenced. I'm sure I will like it. My brother was an air force flyer, too. He loved to fly.


Wayne Brown profile image

Wayne Brown 5 years ago from Texas

Being an old Air Force flyer, you story hear kept me returning to the words of the poem, "High Flight". Your desire to capture and paint that picture reminded me of the phrase..."reached out my hand and touched the face of God". There is much beauty to behold in the clouds and among the stars of the sky that wraps our world if only we take the time to notice. Thanks for sharing! WB


Pamela Kinnaird W profile image

Pamela Kinnaird W 5 years ago from Maui and Arizona Author

DzyMsLizzy, it's so nice of you to leave a comment. A fellow cloud watcher, how about that? Thanks for stopping by.


DzyMsLizzy profile image

DzyMsLizzy 5 years ago from Oakley, CA

Oh, nice! I love finding pictures in the clouds! And I LOVE that song! Have it in my iPod! ;-)

Thanks for such fun hub! Voted up & beautiful.

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