To Zulu on her Sixth Birthday!
It was a slightly nippy early April night, when we going to bed and your sleeping basket placed right next to us. You were new into our family. Shaka was in his basket getting ready to sleep too.
We tucked you in after you refused a couple of times to choose the basket. We turned off the lights, that instant both of you jumped into our bed, and we were lazy enough not to get up and turn the light on.
It has been so since then. You have shared our bed naturally as if there was no other place that would be right.
I, in the years have come to realise the words a friend who introduced me to hounds said:
A Hound loves his master! All the other dogs too but a Hound LOVES HIS OR HER MASTER.
It is the natural transition that I who started as human have made into the canine world, been accepted as the Alpha in the pack at Dhole’s Den.
During the day if we are in or out of our jungle home, you spend your time digging into the ground tucking and hiding away all your goodies and spoils of your hunt. Dhole’s Den is a labyrinth of “Fixed Deposits“ of the canine world. As unlike the other three, you are independent and though you may stand before us or sit without me having to say sit to you. I know well, you are there as a matter of choice. Your acceptance of me it’s the love that I see in your amber eyes as you cuddle and raise your nose to place it on me, be it my hand, my shoulder or my leg that was in cast last year.
You unlike your son Jabu hate cars and travel as they start such a bad churning in your stomach. Therefore, your eyes give away the rebellion in you, the anger and pain of separation that comes when we take leave.
You usually look up into my car as I drive away, seeming to say: You are leaving me alone! How dare you? Then you show your anger by just getting in to your room as if saying: You have taken away my rightful place by your sheer absence so make sure you are back soon.
And when I come back, which I do very soon you greet me with a purr, first announcing our togetherness in your howl then in short whines and give a run down on all the things that you missed including me. Moreover, yes I too realise then what I have missed: The time that we have as a pack is so precious, I do not want to trade it with the money of the world. So what if I will make that million less or more I give damn as Zulu you are the ‚Love of my Life‘. Life would so less colourful, so dreary so heavy without your Love.
So Happy Birthday Baby Zulu!
And to you readers and guests at Dhole’s Den: A Merry Xmas and a wonderful 2015!
Your Papa Karthik
PS: Thanks Sundeep Kumar for the wonderful greeting Card that you made with Zulu and that I share here. She does win hearts 🙂