I've been to various blog meets. Some with 5 folks in 3 star hangouts, some with 200 people in 5 star places, and everything in between.
But this was different. Two bloggers, who over the years, have become , sight unseen, great admirers of someone, who may be amongst Mumbai's leading blogging dogs, with his own blog. Of course.
Every photo tells a story. And his just became a book.
He lives in Mumbai's most popular suburb , often called the Queen of the suburbs. The two bloggers reached a landmark, and were escorted from there by something like a pilot motorbike, which was much in the fitness of things because the head of the family where he lives, has connections to both pilots and bikes.
We entered to an amazing welcome , of wagging tails, excitement, and a bunch of uncontrolled leaps; uncontrolled, because it was clear, that he knew who was coming, he was told earlier to go easy, but like any child who loves visitors, he kind of gave in to his impulses a few times.
Much indulgent nosing around with cool nostrils, a surreptitious lick thrown in quietly, a tentative jump to place his front legs on the blogger's shoulder, and stretching his neck to be patted and spoken to, he would sit for a while, and then get up again , unable to contain his excitement.
His eyes simply spoke volumes. The fellow is an excellent listener. When you said something to him, you could tell he understood. He also follows customs which would make any matriarch of any family proud.
Sits quietly by you, as you scratch his back or pat him. Teeth baring and cooing is not really his scene. He does not threateningly hover around, smelling bags and purses. When the bloggers were offered Tilgul by the family matriarch, he may have wanted some, but did not make a song and a dance about it.
His choice of food would warm any one's heart. Chapati sabji, Kande pohe, Upma, and the like. And if you keep bread and Dosa equidistant from him, the Dosa clearly wins. No wonder his mentor in the family, is often found photographing the lovely traditional dishes cooked in his house.
While the bloggers were having a long chat, he wandered around, went to his favourite spot in the balcony, to check out if he needed to shoo away any trespassing birds. There were some barks from somewhere outside. He answered back. The conversation continued a bit more. Maybe he told his friend ," No yaar, I cant come, we have some guests. Maybe in the evening . ...."
He has this uncanny ability to be part of the group, and listen, and participate in silent communion. Maybe he understands a lot more than things addressed to him alone. If you look into his eyes, you will agree.
The bloggers admired his natural coat, that hinted at some special DNA. Someone once made a film on 1001 of those. And he sat quietly, under the divan, listening and probably being greatly tickled by all the praise being showered on him by the two elderly bloggers. Much like a kid, enjoying being praised for a good performance somewhere.
I think he also watches television news. Had he been able to talk and communicate , I am sure he would have made and excellent contributor, say , with Rajdeep Sardesai's discussions on CNN/IBN.
But he must make do with his expressions. Which his mentor, the family head, captures on film. And every week , they inspire a poem. Woof poetry.
He surely had hunger pangs gnawing inside. He came out from his hiding place, as the bloggers got up to leave. Much loitering around their feet, with now, a side foray to an area where there was a tin of biscuits. I've seen kids stamping feet and throwing their limbs around demanding sweets . Or else. But here was this fellow, just with a hint of movement towards the tin, once in a while giving in to the impulse to leap and place front legs next o the tin, but yet, hesitating.
He has his days when he joyfully yelps, charges around, wags his tail furiously, and thinks the house motorcycle is his enemy. But he understands the occasion. And thinks in what one may say, is a very human way.
There were some photographs happening. One of the bloggers gave him a biscuit, which was devoured before the camera could focus. He kind of hung around the visiting bloggers.
Suddenly there was a flash. And instantaneously, he barked an alert. Someone had clicked. Flashes of light were serious stuff. And he had to act. A responsible fellow, enjoying the adulation and love, but always aware of things around him.
The two bloggers waved goodbye to him, and left to go for lunch with the head of the family.
He stayed back. Grandma was alone. And he would give her company.
The two bloggers returned home. Completely impressed and smitten.....