For the last two months, every day I returned from work in the evening, two lovely wadi puppies that my brother had rescued from the street, would be waiting in anticipation for me near the doorstep of our humble cabin home.
As soon as they’d see me approach from a distance, they’d run towards me and lie flat on my feet, restraining me from walking any further. I’d rub their bellies and they’d run around me, before following me to my home, seemingly happy and excited that I had arrived.
For some reason, I had started looking forward to coming home everyday. This routine of having two excited dogs wait longingly for me, made me feel really good about myself. I felt loved, and unlike how we sometimes patiently and endlessly wait for our fellow human beings to reciprocate to our feelings, this was so effortless and true to the nature of love, that it seemed just right. Try loving a human being, and expecting the same zealousness. After a point, we human beings get so tired of loving and being loved, that before you know it all wanes. We don’t like monotony.
But dogs work magic within this monotonous cycle of loving the people they come to recognise as their own. I didn’t know animals could have that effect on you. In fact, until a few weeks ago, I was nothing close to a dog lover. I liked them from a distance because as much as I would not admit it, they scared me.
It’s natural to be wary of something that doesn’t think, talk and behave like you. But how all my stupid notions fell apart in a matter of weeks, is a mystery. I had started bathing them, holding them, feeding them and most importantly loving them. When on June 15, my neighbours heartlessly dumped the two-month-olds in a garbage bin – while dad and I were at work – my heart sank for the first time. This was worse than heartbreak. This was worse than rejection. This was worse than a lot of things that could happen to me in this lifetime. And because I cried so much that day, I could actually tell the difference.
Fortunately, we found them in the evening. But finding a foster home had become priority. For reasons too many, I couldn’t keep them here with me. It would have been unfair to them. We, however, christened them Rachel and Rocky. And wow, they loved their names. You could call them from any corner of my compound, and they’d be there at the drop of a hat. Just that this morning, they refused to come out when I called out to them. I don’t know how they had figured out that we were giving them away. But they did. We were sending them to a farm house – the owners, our family friends, had agreed to keep them there. I think it to be a better place to the one I have here. Every now and then, our neighbours find new ways to get rid of the dogs and we really fear for them. They whimpered as dad and I got hold of them and placed them in the pick-up. It all happened so suddenly that we did not even get a chance to say proper goodbyes. But honestly, right now at this moment, four hours after they have gone, I feel terrible. It’s like I cut-short this beautiful spell, just like we humans tend to do. We are so fearful of getting attached that we tend to snap off if it doesn’t appear feasible.
From tomorrow onward, I won’t have those beautiful puppies run down to me, when I come home from work. I have lost so much. But they will continue to love, relentlessly and faithfully.