A New Pup In Town

Second day in the new neighborhood, and my mum and dad still don't think it's safe for me to be let out on my own. Pity. Maybe I would just have to keep chewing my little teddy the whole day long. He's in tatters anyway.

Day before yesterday, before I went into a chemically-induced semi-hibernation, I was offered the sweetest biscuit I've ever tasted. I should've known something shifty was going on then as I immediately dozed off past that. I remember being carried by unknown people inside a cagey box. There was a moment when I panicked but then I saw dad's face. He had been there the whole time, giving careful instructions to the men who were carrying me and I knew whatever was being done was, maybe, necessary.

But I didn't know we were shifting to a new house! In an entirely new place! From what I've seen since yesterday, I now have a large garden to roam around. I can now be a little more carefree about hitting things with a single wag of my tail, as there seems to be more space for me to maneuver. I can no longer sense the stale, sickening smell of a lavender room freshener that used to be everywhere inside the last house.

Instead, here I can smell of some distant mangoes! The air is salty, and there is always a light breeze in the air. I like it inside the house, but I think it’s time I go exploring on the outside. I think I saw a cat giving me nasty looks last night; must check her out too.

Okay, hey I got to go now. I can hear dad coming - ‘Woof!’

...

Guess what, I got lucky. At last mum has asked dad to take me out!

As we got out of the gate, the road appeared inclined, and surprisingly empty. There were no speeding cars and hardly any people running about. From the hill side of the road, I heard some light soothing music, but the source did not come in sight. We started trotting down the hill, from where strong breeze blew on our faces. As we came to an end, full blast of blue, green, yellow and sunlight welcomed us. I inadvertently got happy, wagging my tail in excitement!

I didn't know we had a beachfront nearby. That explains the salty smell. As dad took me for a stroll, we met three other people with pets. First one to pass was a fat old lady, dad made small-talk with while I drooled at the smoking hot poodle beside her. She didn't pay much attention to me however. After the lady welcomed both of us into the neighborhood, we marched forward. Dad gave me a wink and let out a low whistle. Perhaps he read my mind, eh?

Next, while we met a few people who greeted my master, I came across an elderly Alsatian named Tyler. He appeared wise, and spoke less. Then I met a cheerful Lab of almost my age, who appeared larger than me. And my being a Golden Retriever, that’s saying something indeed. She welcomed me with a warm ‘Woof!’ as we immediately hit it off.

‘Firstly, you need to lose the stiffness in your walk, dear! You’re not in the city anymore. Here you've got plenty of places to roam around, plenty of room to run around and…’ she said with a wink, ‘plenty of poodles to hang around with. If you know what I mean?!’

My face must have visibly declared my happiness, so she continued with a wag in her tail, ‘You’ll get to meet the others soon. There’s Lennon, Jagger, Tyler, Harrison, Posh and me, Pink.’

‘What’s up with the names?’ I inquired.

‘We were all found and rescued as pups, by the local community church. You’ll find it up on the hill. The old Father of that church secretly seemed to like rock music back then, and so we were named accordingly. The nights used to be such fun, when we were little’ said Pink. ‘You’ll meet Goldie too, a poodle. She’s new to the locality. And between you and me, I think Tyler has got the hots for her!’

‘I think I already met her few minutes back, yes’ said I, without divulging any further piece of my mind. ‘Is there a cat around here too? I think I saw one giving me nasty looks last night.’

‘Ah yes, that’s Riddle. An old, disgruntled witch, she is! She guards the mango tree at the old bungalow on the other end of the hilly road, towards the beach. We’ll get there. That tree bears the sweetest mangoes we've ever had! We’ll take you there soon once you meet everybody…’

With a tug at our individual collars, we knew it was time to go. As we said our goodbyes, she promised to introduce me to the rest of the gang later. And then she sprinted away with her master.

Back in the city, I had Bruno - the pug - as my solitary company. And we were never allowed to venture outside the compound we stayed in. Suddenly having all the free space around me, and all the new friends, all the anticipated adventure that lay ahead - I think I’m going to like this place!

...

Back in the city, I used to sit in front of what the people call the air-conditioning system and watch my ears flap around in the cool wind that came out of it. Here, however, the air in general is windy. Sometimes I just close my eyes and stand in the sun. Then I go chasing insects and butterflies in the garden. I never get tired of them, there’s always some activity out there, waiting for me.

It is evening now, and it is raining. I gazed out of the kitchen window.

The raindrops sound different. In the city, the raindrops only ‘sputtered’ on the concrete window shades. While here the drops fell upon so many varieties of surface - the wooden porch, mud, grass, leaves and even tin roofs. It was all such a hullabaloo. My senses were tingling everywhere! Never before have they been put to test in such enriched environment.

As the rain fell hard on the wooden porch, I mistook the sound for yet another visitor. We’ve had lots of them today, with baskets of housewarming gifts and food, and I’m really tired of barking all day long. The wind blew hard and rattled the windows. They brought the smell of mangoes with them. And as the trees rustled in the wind and rain, my eyes started drooping.

I almost had given up on my final attempt at trying to keep my eyelids open when I saw some movement on the garden fence. I sat up in total attention. My ears went up and my mind was sharp as I listened. But all I heard was rain. It was only after a while of adjusting my focus, that I suddenly noticed something move gracefully on the fence, then jump down to the ground, walk to the porch, lick its paw and look up.

Riddle the cat, was staring right at me from the porch.

‘Stay away from the mangoes, newbie…’ warned Riddle and left suddenly.

I don’t know whether it was my inherent, general loathing for cats or it was the sight of that particular cat, which had managed to push me off the edge, I started howling loudly. Mum and dad came running and tried to calm me down. They fed me some water, patted and caressed me till I stopped after about ten minutes.

They thought it was the rain and thunder that ticked me off. But someone please tell them in the language they understand, we've got a psycho cat in the neighborhood!

After an hour of leisurely lying on the drawing room floor, I again went to the kitchen window.

The rain had stopped, but there was a chilly wind in the air. The trees continued to rustle in the breeze. The cat was nowhere to be seen. Now, I am supposed to be let out from tomorrow. I even have my own kennel being built in the garden! It was all very exciting for a city-raised dog like me who, till now, has lived his life in an apartment on the 5th floor.

The ambiance was such a bliss that I slept off soon enough.

...

I heard dad come to get some water. He stood next to me and amusingly remarked ‘they say be alert like a dog?! As far as our dog goes, he sleeps like a log darling!’ Mum also seemed amused. I didn't bother getting up. Instead I maintained my state of semi-consciousness as I heard him go back to bed.

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This post has been written in the Travel Experience genre for 'Indian Bloggers League' - a fun challenge, organized by the WriteUpCafe.com. You will also find it here. It is the official entry in this genre, by the team Coup d'east. Find the team members and other posts by this team here. Like us, Comment, Share and Follow. Every blogger loves readers, and I especially love you. But you know that already, don't you?

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1 comment:

  1. That's a great dog's perspective of a new location. Nicely written.
    www.metro-greens.in

    ReplyDelete