Guest Author - Kathie LoMonaco
Bob Sakall had it all - the nice home, great job, wife, money. But, somewhere along the line, after his wife announced she was leaving him for a man she had been having a cyber affair with for two years, and after he received a startling prognosis on his health, he chucked it all for the simplicity and honesty of the wild by moving to an isolated cabin up in the mountains of California. Here is where he found his Shangri-La - walking and working among the deer, the birds, and the rest of God's creatures. He labors outside for hours on end until he is bone-tired and at the point of exhaustion.
Bob takes breathtaking pictures of sunsets and dawns; of colorful, exquisite birds and other wildlife; he has befriended his backyard critters. At the risk of going hungry himself, he drives into the nearest town where he purchases huge bags of grains and feed so that his new friends won't go hungry. You see, Bob is now on a limited income - and he would rather starve himself than see these beautiful creatures go hungry - after all, they are his buddies. In fact, he named one of his deer, Buddy. Buddy is the one that broke his leg and Bob defied all the odds and nursed this wild deer back to good health. I guess that proves that if you really want to do something, you can do it.
When Bob first arrived at the cabin, he was going through the chemo process. He said he would lie in bed so sick - then, in the wee hours of the morning he would look out his window and see that his new friend, Buddy, was peering through the window looking back at him - as if to say - hey, are you coming out to play? Buddy has since that time passed away, a victim of the hazards that living in the wild presents - but Bob takes some comfort in befriending another deer he nicknamed "Friend".
Bob said that when he got the startling news about his health, he decided he wanted to get back to nature - and the land. He feels it has really helped him forget about himself and his problems. He stays so busy and so occupied that he has no time to think about his illness.
Bob has expressed his fear to me that he will not be able to continue feeding his precious friends the way he has been up until now as it gets costly and there is only so much he is able to do. He has created a wonderful, entertaining, informative website where you can visit and check out his pictures - his new friends and his surroundings - http://outatbobs.athost.net Bob welcomes you to his 'Forest Home' on his site, 'Out at Bob's', featuring his research and observations.
And, aside from a couple of hair-raising events - like finding a bear on his porch as well as hearing (after the fact) that there was an escaped killer on the loose in rather close proximity to his cabin, he still insists he wouldn't trade living in such a remote location for anything.
Please click on Bob's link and visit his wonderful, scenic site -- and, if you are so inclined, maybe you can drop him a line. He has listed his address for anyone who would like to contribute to his 'feed the critters' type fund, and to keeping his website operational. He's hoping one day soon he can provide a webcam so his visitors can actually see what's going on in real time. Bob is doing our earth and all of us a tremendous service. Nature is so precious - and beautiful. We need to show our children that we care about our creatures and our planet. Once they start disappearing, we will have no recourse.
Bob even wrote to me one day recently saying he'd like to try to heal a sick, wounded deer by finding a way to get him into his house - for shelter, comfort, food and to also figure out how he could even bathe him. I cautioned him on this as I was afraid the animal would get spooked and rear his leg or foot up and really hurt Bob. It worried me that he could be lying there up in his cabin in the wilderness without anyone knowing he was in need of aid, all because he puts his love of the animals ahead of his own welfare.
I hope you will check out Bob's site "Out at Bob's" (link listed above)...and maybe drop him a line. His is a not-for-profit website. The pictures he takes of his surroundings are no less than spectacular. Bob is a very interesting and knowledgeable person - I know I can certainly learn a thing or two from him.
I think that Bob's story is truly inspirational. Getting back to nature, I think, pays one benefits in so many ways - psychologically, physiologically, mentally, emotionally - and Bob is living proof of that!