Just in time for Valentine's Day comes a tender love story out of the wildfires raging in Australia. It starts when a firefighter named David Tree comes upon a badly burned female koala bear. In a generous act of what Leonardo Boff would call interspecies solidarity, Tree offers the koala his bottled water to drink. The act is captured on film and video by the accompanying media.
But the story doesn't end there. The firefighter arranges for the koala -- who has since been baptized "Sam" -- to be transported to the Southern Ash Wildlife Shelter for rehabilitation. At the shelter, "Sam" not only finds healing but also love in the form of "Bob" -- another koala burn victim at the shelter. Shelter worker Colleen Wood comments on the budding relationship: "They keep putting their arms around each other and giving each other hugs. They really have made friends and it is quite beautiful to see after all this...Sam is probably aged between two to four going by her teeth and Bob is about four so they have a muchness [a lot in common] with each other."
Tree is also delighted that the "lady" he rescued has found love. "They've really taken a shine to each other as they are both burned and share the same burned smell," he says.