I’ve been scared of dogs since my childhood and this fear turned into a sort of an aversion as the years went by. Even when my children tried an umpteenth number of times to change my mind about adopting a pet, I was successful in resisting their attempts. So, when the time came for my children to move out to follow their respective career paths, it came with a certain amount of relief that there would be no more pet threats.
The relief, however, turned out to be short-lived as last year within a couple of days of my daughter’s arrival from London, “we” adopted a 6-week old super-active beagle pup. Christened after a popular Netflix series character, Rio was completely hijacked by my children for the entire duration of their vacation, and so for two weeks, I saw very little of him. Things were to change, however, when the kids left and the tedious task of bringing up the now 8-week old Rio was left to my wife and me.
Those were difficult times, from cleaning up the house after Rio’s liberal poos’ and pots’ to the daily vet runs, which went on for many months as Rio went through a long spell of BPS (Beagle Pain Syndrome), an auto-immune disease that almost took him away. It was thanks to the Almighty, the vet, and my wife’s motherly touch that Rio got a new lease of life and was soon bubbling over with energy and making our home a lively and lovely space. I didn’t quite realise when I started loving Rio, and vice-versa. It was almost as if all my inhibitions about pets had never existed as slowly, he became the center of our lives.
Given the background of his run-in with illness, Rio is not a very social being, and except for an occasional friendly brush with a couple of other Beagles who live around, he simply barks away at the other dogs. In fact, at one point it made us suspect Rio of being a bit of a racist for wanting to hang out only with fellow Beagles. So, you can imagine my surprise when Rio did not bark at a small French bulldog being accompanied by an elderly couple at the park last week. Very soon, both dogs were smelling each other and running around and playing together. I was quick to introduce myself to the old couple and got to know their dog’s name was Oreo. I wondered if it was the similar-sounding names (Rio and Oreo) that had played a role in this newly found and fast-developing friendship.
The new routine went on for a few days and honestly, it was a relief to watch Rio playing with another dog. The arrangement also meant a win-win situation for everyone around because now I could focus on my walk without worrying about Rio; my wife could catch up on her sleep with him out of the house, and Rio could build-up a good appetite for breakfast.
I watched the friendship grow in the days that followed until the fateful day when I stepped into the park one morning and let Rio loose to play with Oreo. The elderly couple called me aside and in a somber and hush-hush tone told me that Oreo was a bitch (her gender, not character!). In a state of a blissful morning mood, I did not grasp the message that was being conveyed and I guess my expression must have shown it because suddenly the old man’s tone changed and a lecture ensued. He took off about the two dogs being at an “innocent stage” in life and how something may happen in the ”heat of the moment”, which they did not want should happen!
As the penny dropped and I realised what the couple was trying to convey, one look at their expressions assured me that they were dead serious. So, I agreed immediately that the two love birds could not be allowed to mingle freely, and putting the leash back onto Rio, I made a dignified exit. Thereafter, in deference to their concerns, I changed my walk timings to ensure that the two star crossed lovers would not run into each other.
Come to think of it, the Rio and Oreo saga is no less than a Bollywood potboiler, where the boy meets a girl but the girl’s parents do not approve and so they snub the advances of the boy, thus bringing to a close a budding friendship. My heart went out to poor Rio as I consoled him, “Don’t worry, my boy, there is always the next time.”
Picture Credit :
85 thoughts on “Always A Next Time”
That’s a pretty good job Vikram. I think you should do this more often.
A nice read Vikram uncle 🙂
Very nicely wrapped up too!
Lovely read! Impressed with the writing quality and expression. You ought to take this hobby up seriously.
Thanks Sujata. I am lazy bum …. don’t know if I can take up anything seriously…
A lovely read which flowed so well and expressed beautifully – a talent which you must pursue and I look forward to the next coffee conversation.
An interesting read! Well penned article…..
Thanks Simran. Hope you are having a good time in Teerthan …
Very impressive, Vikram 🙂
You were always a kalakar but this is a very professional job done. Invest little more time and we’ll see a lot more of these intersting readings
Redhu Saheb…. thanks …
Eloquent ! Made for a very nice read. More to come I hope !!
Thanks Murali for your encouraging comments
Literally intrigued by the way it’s expressed! I can partially relate to the story how it begins, because I’ve been very scared of dogs and trying to overcome that fear still seems like a Journey for me.
Thanks Manveen Kaur. I think it is just the first hurdle that needs to be broken …
Nicely written Vikram! Waiting for the next one
Thanks Dua saheb…
Congratulations very well written Vikram, u should continue writing, excellent work
Thanks Pratibha ji
Congratulations Vikram. Very we written.
Vikram, You are fantastic in your expressions. Great mastery on telling a story without wasting much words. I felt as if you are directly telling a story to the reader.. rather listener. Keep writing. 👍👍
Thanks Akshay … much appreciate your very encouraging words
You have a smooth story telling ability that transformed the words to pictures. Great job to the budded writer
Thanks Karthik …. so I can get a job as a content writer in your company ….
Well done Vikram, thoroughly enjoyed reading it. Please carry on with all your energy & enthusiasm. Will look forward to your next piece of literary work.
Thanks & regds
Thanks Dada …. long time … hope all is good at your end
Well done Vikram. Please continue with full zeal. Keep on sharing such stories.
Thanks Professor saheb
Kahaanikaar. Tabb bhi. Abb bhi. You mastered then, and the art has only gone better. Keep it up Vikram.
Thanks Senti … tum bhee …hum bhee …sab kalakaar
Great thought VIKRAM
We as human being should always try to explore our hidden talents
Which you have done
Congratulation for your new venture
Thanks Mahesh …. no venture .. just a small write …
Well written Sir, You should do more writeups as you carry great experience.
Impressive writing Vikram. Keep on writing now. We have a writer in our family now.
Very well articulated Maasu!
Please continue to follow your passion. Looking forward to the next one.
P.S-Your story makes me hopeful for changing Neha’s aversion to dogs to keeping one at some point 😜
Thanks Rajat …. let us sit together and have chat with Neha…
Wish you all the success and fulfilment towards your goal. ” Congratulations”
Thanks Bendi …
Good job Vikram, look to reading the next one soon.
Thanks Sunil … hope you are doing good
It is great to know more about you, Vikram.
I am looking forward to meet and ride with you in next group ride. All the best and good luck for your future endeavour.
Thanks Sir … riding together would be my pleasure
Beautiful expression of love & care through words.
Thanks Medha …
Hope better next time for Rio😅. Pretty good beginning Vikram. Keep going.
Thank you Navratan. I will pass on your wishes to Rio :))
Beautifully written, Vikram, I really got engaged in the story and look forward to reading more about Rio’s & your adventures. You have a wonderful way with words.
Hello Daxa, glad you liked it so much.
Very interesting, well written, photos added to the effects.
May be few more photos can make it more lively.
Thanks Yogesh for your feedback
Its Great. Expression and Articulation is very good. You should write more !!
Dear Siddharth, thanks for the encouraging words
Beautiful story and so very touching!!
Dear Tashi, glad you liked it. But you know the best story teller … whom we all miss so much ….
Loved every word of it. Keep writing more and more. So proud of you 😉
Thanks dear …. you are the pillar of my strength
Wow!!! Vikram Bhaiya beautifully expressed n written…Seems you already are an Author….Must write more often…
Thanks Sonu, I am no author …most likely a one timer
Well written. Wondering if it fact a fiction or factual. Nevertheless it is well drafted and you can move on to take up writing in a bigger way.
A story can never be complete without some fiction … but this one is all fact. Glad you liked it Kapil
What a free flowing expression of thoughts…. Truly magical…. With bollywood tadka…. I agree with all, you should think of this hobby seriously…
Thanks DS, happy you liked the separation of love-birds
Excellent read and great story on Rio loved reading this and well done.
Proud that I have now managed to get you becoming an author.
Keep it up and look forward to some more follow up stories.
Dear Bram, I am sure Rio remembers you … so come back soon
Interesting read- struck a cord as my father is really scared of dogs too!
A suggestion- the ‘love birds’ can continue their love story if you get Rio neutered!
Thanks Shruti, thanks for the suggestion, And I can’t help but think …. Rio ko pyaar ke liye kyaa kuchch karnaa padegaa
Writing suits you better than insurance!
Miss meeting you.
Dear Douglas, I miss our meetings too … let us plan a catch-up soon, hopefully in Singapore
It’s so well written even I might get a dog
Actually, you must Varun …. life becomes very happy after adopting a pet
The end is dramatic. You should write a sequel or sequels to the story as it grows / happens.
Thanks Hemanshu, glad you liked it.
Caught completely by surprise. Never knew you could work at wordcraft. Interesting, short enough to retain my attention and long enough to complete the tale. Bravo.
Thanks bhai, well summarised and well surprised :))
Beautifully expressed sir !
As written by so many above, I too believe that you must take up this as seriously and keep writing and writing!
It would be amazing to go through more and more coffee conversations..
Thanks Saakshi …for your encouraging words
Bhaiya, you have always been a great story-teller since the time I know you, and you have once again proven that. Very engaging…
Keep writing and sharing.
I think you are pulling my leg …from far .. far .. far away. But coming from you, continued-learner … thanks
Wow!!! Such a lovely read! … look forward to follow up story … next chapter of Rio’s life!
Thanks Ravi … for giving me the lead to my next write …hopefully
Nice write up Vikram,keep it up.me too has aversionon of dogs .
I know Ruby, I have seen it with Rio at our home. Thanks