When my friend asked me the question, I laughed. I laughed at the imaginary repercussions that might occur in case it really happened. I might be even banished from my own home for lying; deception, pretense and entertaining illegal activities (according to my dad) at home in the absence of the family members. Or probably ,my friends would never be allowed to come home again. Sad, they would be missing my mom’s cooking which they relish. I smiled at my little secrets, hidden forever from everyone only because it will never happen. Well my friend had asked me a simple question-“What will happen if in future your dog starts talking?”
Sounds very preposterous but I realized dogs can talk in their own unique style. I realized it the hard way. Whenever my mom goes out for the day leaving me alone with our dog, she would call me on my phone for almost 10 times to ask me the same questions again and again-Did you pour water for him? Did you feed him? Did you clean the bowl before feeding him? , Did you take him out for a walk? Etc. I really miss those beautiful days when mom used to call only for me. On one such lazy day, it so happened that my mom left for shopping and I was left with a huge to-do list. There are not many Homo sapiens around who can still beat me at laziness. After innumerous reminder calls from mom, I finally got down to feed my dog. I don’t know if he behaves this way with others but with me, he has to be coaxed, cuddled, hugged before ‘your majesty’ decides to eat. Well these are some of the things you have to put up when you are jobless. After all the hard work along with frantic calls from mom, I finally let out a sign of relief as he lapped up the last drop of milk. Signs of relief turned to a groan when I saw my next activity in my to-do list, to take the dog for a walk. I seriously hate taking my dog for a walk plainly because I am lazy to walk. After the initial conflict between duty and laziness, this time my laziness won and I decided to skip his walking. “Who can tell mom? There is no one else at home and my dog doesn’t talk”-I thought with a triumphant grin. I went back to my good old computer and eventually had my afternoon nap also when mom came home at evening. She was in a rage. She shouted at me, reminded me of my responsibilities and laziness, and promised to herself that she would never ask me to do anything (how I wish she keeps her promises), She asked me-Why, why did I not take him for a walk? It was a valid question but a far more important one was troubling me. I mustered all my courage, I even stood up so that I can run away in case mom’s temper erupts again and asked her innocently and earnestly-‘mom, how did you find out? ‘. She threw a floor mop at me and said-‘if you had cleaned this pool of piss at the gate before I came, I wouldn’t have found out. So my son, do the cleaning”. I looked at my dog and he raised his head for a while and went back to sleep.
Dogs are amazing creatures and as they say, man’s best friend. I and he share a very cordial relation. He would never come to me if he had other options. The other day, I was trying to impress my relatives on how my dog listens to me. While they were looking at me, I said “come here” and he came running to me wagging his tail and tongue. I said-“Sit down. Come on now, sit down” and he sat down obediently. They were impressed. I had a huge grin on my face and then said-“Give me a handshake.”And he lifted his right leg slowly and gracefully, and I shook hands with him smoothly giving a huge smile to everyone present in the room. It was this moment; he decided to prick my happy balloon. He caught my right hand and snatched the biscuit I had concealed beneath my palm in a flash and ran away-from the room, from the house and sat happily at the gate. One of my relative’s kids came up to me and asked me if he could also shake hands with the dog. I put up a brave face and tried calling him back. I called out to him with love, with compassion and even with desperation. He didn’t even look at me again and was busy looking out of the gate. I finally and reluctantly took out another biscuit and called out to him and lo, he came running to me wagging his tail and tongue. My uncle was quick to remark-‘Oh it’s the biscuit, isn’t it’. Damn!!!
All said and done, He is our hero. My mom had a proud smile on her face when our neighbor remarked-“your dog keeps watch for the whole colony”. It’s entirely different issue that he sleeps inside our bedroom exactly in front of the cooler at nights but neighbors are oblivious of that fact. But it’s also a fact that all through the day, he doesn’t let anyone come even to our street, leave alone our door step. Few weeks back, some hijras found their way into our colony, demanding money in the guise of begging and our hero drove them out ferociously. We all love our little pet and very proud of it. I just sometimes wish he shows me bit of respect but like among men, respect has to be earned. Damn, I should have taken him for that walk.
Oops, I forgot to introduce my dog to all of you-His name is Tuffy. Check out his pic at the start.
And before I sign off, I shall take this opportunity to pray; pray he never gets the power to talk.