I offer my obeisance to you Rev. Sri. Om Swamiji🙏🕉

Let me begin with a small childhood incident of a scene where a hungry beggar approached my father while he was getting out of his car, so my father took him to the nearby restaurant paid for his hearty meal, but before that he requested the beggar to was his hands and face, as he saw his runny nose, which the poor man had not bothered to clean. After he was made comfortable and on the chair, my father very politely told him, “ One can be poor monetarily but Grace never forgets to show up as to how to keep oneself  clean as water is available every where in nature, it’s always showering it’s blessings on the rich and poor alike. One must never let the spirit get poor for we are gifted to atleast acknowledge ourselves with respect and hygiene which is like a prayer that brings about a great difference in one’s life.

True, we many a times moan about life and circumstances till our last breath and that we don’t have enough of this and that. But one precious thing we are never ever short of  in life is, Kindness and Compassion. We don’t need money for our blessed virtues and right thinking. Even though I have gone through immense troubled times, which was witnessing hell ( some by choices some by destiny) in my past , or be it present, but that never ever stopped or rather could ever stop me from witnessing the Divine  who kept granting me end number of  Heavenly  moments in the form of His Grace  to serve the Universe and experience His Bliss🕉🦢

Yet another day of Bliss....

It was a beautiful day ,  as I relaxed  with my cup of tea  watching the massive lush green field  from my balcony , full of sheep and goats happily grazing. The sun smiling and making this early morning sight so breathtaking and therapeutic . I truly felt lucky to have shifted to this apartment in Pune from Calcutta. Being new to this city,  and barely knowing anyone did feel like  a bit alienated.  Though I love my quiet space  but communication  is important at times with others, and undoubtedly  friends do become part of your life in due course. In my hearts of hearts I asked God to help me in meeting good friends ( I am sure many of us do that conversation with the Divine) .

The New society was massively spread in seven blocks, the staff was superbly helpful and kind and I was handed over couple of numbers  of the Society groups by the office manager.Very soon there was Ganesh festival and I got to know my neighbour  who was very friendly and a cordial person.  Strangely after a couple of days there was a  message on the Society group that someone has abandoned a small puppy in the garden area and there was no one to take care of him. Though the security guards  found out that there were two bachelor boys who stayed in the same society , they got the pup but could not manage, got flustered and the best they thought was to abandon it quietly. The security however reported the matter and the pup was handed back to the boys with a warning.

I was only aware of the news of the puppy being left abandoned and day and night I was thinking of him. I gave it a thought that best to get the little furry in my home and eventually see what could be done. I felt a strong pull towards him. After a couple of days I enquired about him from my neighbour but when I  came to know that the puppy was handed back to their owner it got me even the more worried . What is the guarantee that they would keep him after abandoning him in the first place?  It could get worse and they might throw it on the road next time. So I called my neighbour ( who also was a big time pet lover)  and asked her if she could accompany me to the pup owner’s flat just to ensure that the little one is safe. We reported to the security of our visit to the boys apartment and asked him to keep vigil.

Once at their apartment , we knocked the door but our utter dismay after knocking  for good 15-20 mins a young boy came out half dazed ( it was 11 a m in the morning ) and when we enquired about the pup he said, “ I have no clues , where he is”.  I had to calm down my neighbour as she got so hysterical assuming, that they surely might have thrown him away after listening to the boy’s weird answer and started yelling at the boy for being so insensitive.

I gathered courage and sought permission from the boy after he pointed out that the pup was in the upper floor ( it was a big flat with 5 rooms) and  I went up and my friend waited downstairs , and had called the security too as the boy seemed to be drunk. Once upstairs, the sight of the space was badly unkept , I found  that  all  doors of the 4 rooms were shut , so I made a sound and knocked every door  to get back some noise of the pup if it was in. After good 5-10 mins I could hear a bleak sound from one of the room , all this while the two boys residing in the flat just slumped themselves in the couch downstairs . I managed to push open the door and we found the little pup, it was soiled and  wet, shivering as he  was not fed for 2-3days . Imagine a barely month and half  old puppy in this condition. The boys had dumped him in a room without food and water. It was tiny pup who kept soiling on the floor, weeping for food .  It’s voice was meek and it came running to me. I picked it up not bothering  how soiled it was for I felt it needed some warmth.

I spoke to one of the boys, “ Are you not  keen in keeping the pup?” and they shrugged their shoulders and said, “ we don’t need him, please take him away, he is such a pain.”  That was it! I stepped out of their flat with the little one in my arms. It felt like a life was saved, as I could feel the little heartbeat of the pup who needed love to breathe well.

Back at my place, the first thing I did was to feed him with warm milk , with his weak little legs he hurriedly started having it and in no time finished the whole cupful of it.  After an hour I bathed him, I had tears in my eyes when he felt soothed, trust me this very feel is so Divine it’s as if you witness God on daily basis through emotions  and experience of love unconditional. I then took out new sheets for him , made a nice bed  and kept him warm with a blanket.  After few more feeds and petting, the  pup indeed slept well , no not on his bed  though, but  had managed quietly to sneak himself in my duvet when I was fast asleep.  What gave me immense peace and smile was to see him sleeping so peacefully and cutely snuggled.  I thanked God enough for this. The next thing I know is my days were all booked for him , for the he truly kept me on my toes.

My neighbour went ahead and posted the whole incident on the Society group that took place and it was big news. I started getting end no of thankful messages and people started visiting my place to see the little one on request. He became a little super  hero. In just a weeks time the furry  pup was healthy and hopping around everywhere in my apartment. Eventually, the big work of finding his forever sweet home started and  I got in touch with certain animal support groups,  with the help of people in my society and in just a couple of  weeks time the sweet Pup left for his forever home with a wonderful family . It was quite heart breaking for me and I was in tears the day the little furry left.

But the fur baby truly came as a messenger of God to me, as it was through him in just a couple of weeks I met so many people in Pune. Made some real good friends. And through him , in one of the animal support group , the one name emerged strongly was of a gracious and beautiful lady Rajni Didi. She is  70 years of age full of life and with an unyielding spirit. She has been looking after the strays for past 34 years. Each day she gets up at 3 am, along with couple of her helpers, cooks food for 400-500 stray dogs everyday and feeds them both mornings and evenings without fail.

Is it really possible? Was my first thought.. where we as humans  find it so difficult at times to cook meal for a family and may skip and even eat or order from outside, this adorable lady is busy cooking for strays for almost 34 years  without a break! It’s nothing less than a Sadhna, her Bhakti ( dedication)  and Bhaav ( sentiment) is indeed so Godly. Oh I so wished to meet her , for it would be like meeting  God .

And I did meet her eventually. I spoke to her  personally over the phone and she very sweetly invited me over to her place. Her home is accommodating 5-6 stray pets already. I spent almost a day with her at her place.She is frail , can’t walk properly as she had a surgery in one of her legs,  but works hard to look after the strays, an everyday early affair to getting the stuff required daily to cooking boiled rice with chicken , to arranging the segregation of food packets in different coloured plastic bags assigned for different areas ,  she then leaves in an auto rickshaw , her helpers on their bikes distributing food to the strays in all areas. After they are fed, while driving back home all the left over empty packets  on the pavements are then collected to be binned. Back home the cats around her locality are fed too. Kudos to her spirit.

Like a sweet Pied Piper the beautiful and gracious Didi not only feeds but also helps to find shelter , provide medical help to the strays managing all single handedly.

What keeps her going and she says, “ I feel their pain physically and emotionally . If I could take away their hunger, pain and suffering I would do anything to get rid of it till my last breath”.

Her kindness and warmth is such an inspiration. Blessed to have met you in this lifetime Rajni didi.

It’s been five years of our friendship now, the bond has strengthened with every passing year. Rajni didi barely goes to anyone’s home but has made it a point to come and stay with me many a times and visit whenever she feels like.  She loves my hands made paranthas. There has been times where I managed to take her for small fun ride, ( a kids train and bus😂) and it’s sheer Grace and privilege to have spend such cheerful and amazing moments with her. Am I really short of friends! I can only see the Divine smiling at me 🙂 for He showed up in the form of such a graceful Soul.  Pune , you have shown me something beyond imagination and for that I shall ever remain grateful. It been over a year since I’m in Canada now, we still keep in touch, and very soon I shall be back to Mumbai and then meet her and she is equally excited like a little child to meet me. Oh! she is such a kind hearted and giving Soul. May Divine immensely Bless her with good health and joy.

Reminds me of a soulful quote by Malee..

“Ah, kindness. What a simple way to tell another struggling soul that there is love to be found in the world.” And a single act of kindness throws out roots in all directions, and the roots spring up and make new trees.” 

Life is indeed such a beautiful gift🙏

Thank you for dropping by friends and reading this post .

Jai Sri Hari🙏🕉


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Siddhika Umesh

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