Vantage point

Tuesday, March 25, 2003


I have waxed eloquent about my new room, and specifically about the opening in the corridor in front which allows a beautiful view of the sunset in the North Indian Plains every evening. Now there was an extra bed on our floor, so it was kept next to this opening. Our intention was to sit there on leigurely evenings (Hahhh!!) chatting about stuff, looking at the sunset. Abuse profs, talk about movies, make weird plans....the works.

Now like any dutiful bed, this bed too is accompanied by an ever faithfull pillow. This bed is placed just opposite my room. Last night, after having pored over how to procure material for business, I stepped out of my room and was met by a most queer sight. There is this dog we call the Nawabi Cur. He was sleeping on the bed. Now the reason we call it the Nawabi Cur is that it acts like one. It was definitely one of Lucknow's famous bulky Nawabs (Wajid Ali Shah types) in its last birth. It loves sleeping on beds. Ever since the seniors left, half the rooms in our hostel have been empty. This dog always sleeps in one of the rooms. It will jump on the bed and refuse to budge unless George Bush is willing to send in a Daisycutter. Other dogs will scoot if we stamp on the ground hard and make some hollow threatening noises like "Hudddtttt". Now the Nawab of Dogs. He gives you a very irritated look as if saying "Ama miya, kyun pareshan kartey ho? Soney do yaar." Then you have to threaten it with bodily harm by bringing a leg or something close to it. Now it looks offended as if saying "Humein maarogey? Gustaakh aur Namakoool kahin key!! Lahaul Bilakuwat!!". You have to display a willingness to inflict heavy violence on the dog to get it to budge.

Not many go through with this routine. So almost all the beds in the empty rooms have been used by the Nawabi Cur so far. This corridor one was the only bed left, and now it had religiously taken to it, like an aging Steve Waugh heading for an Indian tour. What pissed me off even more was that it had very conveniently put its head on the pillow!!!!!! That is the height of insolence. If the cur wants to indulge in such Nawabi "thaats", it would have to find itself a new kingdom. I picked up a chair. My reputation among dogs here is similar to what Sherlock Holmes' was in the shadier parts of London. They do not like to take me on. I think this is because they know that my eventual weapon will be my vocal chords. Yep, I can sing a dog(for that matter a human too!!) to its death within 5 minutes.

So the dog ran away and I returned to my room. In the morning, Sunil told me that he too spotted the dog sleeping on the bed later on, again, USING THE PILLOW!!! Some curs never learn from any curse. Now Sunil, whose reputation is like that of Hercule Poirot in the London underworld, threatened the dog and de-curred the premisis.

The tragedy is that the bed which we had thought would make a great "baithak" for us all, has been dirtied by this mangy, dirty, unwashed, coat-shedding dog with aristocratic tendencies.