No matter what I write about Angels Rest, it will sound clichéd. Everything I do write about it, however, is true. On the morning we departed the desert to return home we decided to make one last drive through Angels Canyon and Best Friends, stopping at Angels Rest for a few minutes of quiet contemplation.
Forget about enlightenment.
Sit down wherever you are
And listen to the wind singing in your veins.
As dawn broke sideways across the cemetery’s ornately carved main gate, we silently entered and slowly, reverently walked our way along paths where hundreds of memorials mark the final resting places of dearly departed pets. Simple markers, carved plaques, personalized urns, wind chime trees bearing names and messages of a favorite cat or beloved dog. Many were surrounded by mementos: dog tags, pictures, pebbles, messages of love and remembrance. Remi “Our Baby,” Mr. White Kitty, Flopster and Mopster, the Reno Rabbits.
Along every path was a gazebo with a full and fresh bottle of water set atop an overturned dish. I found myself overwhelmed by the love displayed and was wordless to describe its power and emotion. It was humbling in the extreme, and as a quiet wind lifted the chimes in chorus the spirit and solemnity of the place moved me to tears.
Long moments were lost in somber thought before the sun rose higher, reminding us it was time to leave. As we made our way out we were greeted by the cemetery’s groundskeeper. (I did say clichéd earlier, but I also said true.) His eyes radiated the same energy we felt from Angels Rest, and we spoke quietly for a few minutes about the power of the place. “Something very special here,” he said. “Something very beautiful.”
With the chimes fading behind us we began our long journey home, a new song humming in my head, beating in my heart.
This is my spirit singing.