Thursday, June 14, 2007

Canine fate?

As young as I could remember, I have always loved dogs. Walking on the streets in India, we often passed dirty and mangy stray dogs. To my mother's dismay and panic, I would frequently run and pat them. Fortunately, I did not get bitten, except once by my neighbor's dog. Still I was unfazed.

There's a photo of me as a three-year old, at my grandparents' home, laughing and sitting on the floor while my hand was in a German Shepherd's mouth. I had no qualms about hugging strange dogs or sitting in a doghouse with the dog even if it stank.

As a teenager, I started to beg and plead my parents to get a dog but of to no avail. The reason? We traveled often. My sister disliked and even feared dogs. My dad, even though could tolerate dogs, was not fond of them as well.

Only my mother had grown up with German Shepherds but they were outdoor dogs.

The "You can get a dog when you are grown up and on your own" reply was often repeated, to my discouragement.

To satisfy my desire, at least, I put up posters of puppies of all breeds on the walls of my bedroom.

However, to my surprise, on my 21st birthday, my mother got me a black laborador puppy. To heck with my dad and sister, my mom replied.

Unfortunately, it was wrong timing as I was busy with two jobs and attending community college. And to top that, the dog and my personality did not match. In other words, I felt no connection. Hence, it was given away three weeks later.

Ten years later, I made a mistake of adopting a Husky mix out of pity for this poor puppy who was abandoned by his mother. This dog had issues I could not handle, as I was a "newcomer". I gave it to a friend.

Fast forward to two years. I was with a friend on the way from a store when he suggested to go visit this old lady who collected stray dogs with puppies. I was not in the mood and asked him to drop me home. But he coaxed me to go with him.

"Simply see them and quickly leave." So I relented.

Arriving to this dilapidated farmlike area with a bunch of mangy stray dogs following us, my friend went to talk to this old lady. Leaning against the car, barely holding my nose from the stink, I waited for him to return.

A black curly cocker spaniel calmly walked up to me and started sniffing. He then returned and excitedly said this dog who was smelling me just had puppies. But I was not interested at all and simply wanted to go home.

Urging me to follow him to see the last puppy as her siblings were already given away, he led me, with the old lady ahead of him, to this old abandoned station wagon. I saw few dogs mingling in the car.

Then the lady opened the passenger door and I gasped.

There was this small cute cuddly velvet black puppy, a mixed breed, which almost fit the palm of a man's hand, excitedly wagging her tail.

I fell in love immedately.

Still, I was reluctant to adopt this absolutely adorable puppy because I did not want to regret as I previously did with the other dogs.

Both he and the lady tried to convince me to take the puppy now as it was the last one she had at this point. Yet I resisted, saying I needed time to think, giving at least a week lest do I decide.

It was a risk I decided to take because this puppy was so adorable and seemed to have such sweet personality. It would be no question if anyone else came by and took her.

During the week, I thought about it over and over. I then recalled my mother telling me I tended to run away from responsilities. Therefore, I decided to accept the responsibility, for once and all.

Excitedly, during this time I shopped for items for the puppy. I already had a name in mind for her as I was supposed to give this name, Coral, for the previous husky but it did not match her personality however. I even planned few days off to spend time with her, as well housetraining her.

On that Friday, my friend came and picked me up and went to see that old lady. But to my dismay, the gate was closed. We waited for
half an hour but no show.

Downcasted, I went home. I thought maybe it was not meant to be.

One hour later, the phone light flashed. My friend said the old lady called him back saying she was working overtime but she brought the puppy and her mother with her.

Few days after I got the puppy, I discovered we had a connection!

About three years later, I was sorting out old photos in my drawer. To my shock, I came across photos of me as a one and half year old with my parents' neighbor's black-colored puppies. And I also had a glass statue of a puppy given to me by my best friend for my fifteenth birthday.

They looked EXACTLY like Coral! She is a mixed breed.

Was it a fate?

When you're not "looking", it will happen right under your nose. :)