Today’s story is a diary series about a dog and his human. It is about 12-year-old Kobe, my professor’s loyal companion. Professor Kamal Mitra Chenoy is one of my favourite professors from Jawaharlal Nehru University. An academic and activist, he taught us to challenge and critique but respectfully. He taught us to think but not memorise and the real value of having a discourse.
When I stumbled upon a photo of Sir with Kobe on Facebook, I sent a note to him asking for a good time to have a chat. A couple of e-mails and a call later, I learnt from Professor Anuradha Chenoy – his wife and our professor – that Sir is not very well. My Professor – who I fondly remember as tall, strong and ever-ready for a good conversation – is not well. But how even in his current state, he continues to be an animal empath and absolutely adores Kobe’s company. They are indeed inseparable, a source of comfort and company for each other – a dog and his human.
February 10, 2021
They call me a shadow to my human. And they are right. You can almost always spot us together. We wake up together in the morning – these days a little later than usual, it is a bit cold. Then we sit in the garden to do our morning rituals – sunbathe while having breakfast and read the newspaper. There is so much information to take in, sometimes I am unable to remember certain things. But I guess it is okay to forget a few things – although I always remember to take a snooze in the afternoon with my human under that warm blanket.
February 11, 2021
Today was a rather unusual day. Right after breakfast, my human got up and kept walking around our home for a long time as if trying to remember something. Since I never leave his side, I too walked with him. Afterwards, I felt a little tired. I think he was tired too because he sat down and seemed a bit lost. I placed my nose on his lap and looked into his eyes and I could sense he felt better. When I was little and scared of loud noises, he used to do the same to calm me down. Now we have both grown up and often end up comforting each other.
February 12, 2021
I overheard my other human telling someone on the phone that “Kobe is like a therapy dog to Kamal.” Not sure what that meant. I guess she meant we are inseparable, like a dog and his human. Earlier when my human used to go to the university, I had to wait for him all day but one look at him in the evening used to cheer me up. These days he does not step out much and we can spend all day together. But I can sense that he feels sad sometimes. He misses his friends at the university, perhaps? I have been told that nowadays it is hard to go out due to some virus.
February 13, 2021
Just yesterday I wrote that my humans are not going out much but today they were gone for a long time. When they returned, I could sniff strange and familiar scents. I could get the same scent when he comes back from the hospital. But I eased out on smelling my pack member Sophie, my human sibling Ayesha’s doggo. She is quite young and playful. Our other pack member is Alfie, who is also much younger to me. I like spending time with him. Nowadays my human goes to the hospital quite often and that smell I do not like. But maybe they will make him feel better.
February 14, 2021
Hey, I forgot to mention that I was at the hospital too. One day I was not feeling too well and thought of resting until I felt better. I did not even walk much that day. But the pain in the stomach kept increasing. I felt like throwing up but could not. And I was drooling so much. Then my humans took me to the hospital and the doctors operated on me. Apparently, it was bloat and I had 50-50 chances of making it. Even though I felt sick and scared, I remember my human’s face before I was taken in for the surgery. He was helpless and scared too. I looked into his eyes and promised to make it. I promised to be around because I know he needs me and I him.
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To my human…
When I was wobbly, you taught me to walk.
When I was unsure, you taught me to roll in the grass.
Even if I got muddy, you never shouted. You gave me a hot bath instead.
You taught me to enjoy sunbathing sitting by your side.
Boy, what joy we have had together…
Together, we have also grown older and wiser.
Now we walk slowly, we rest more…
But we still enjoy each other’s company and grow in love each day
That is our story – you and me – my dear human and me – Kobe and Kamal…