Rachana Baidya

Kathmandu:

A remembrance that haunts my memory is that of my beloved dog Fauna. He meant the world to me in his own doggie way. Fauna was a big, strong and healthy Collie. One was afraid of his size but I felt safe. We shared a relationship that was strange because we had a deep understanding for each other. The wag of his tail was precious. Whenever I left for school, he would follow me to the gate and anxiously wait for me to come home and play with him. I enjoyed every moment we spent together. I would share my sorrows and my joys with him. I would share my food. Fauna loved ice-creams and melons.

Even 13 years later, I never knew he was growing old and weak. One day, he could not walk. I took him to the hospital where he was prescribed some medicines. For 11 days, I administered them to him on time and looked after him. Every time I passed by him, his eyes would follow me as if he was trying to say something. Maybe about the pain that he was in. I would sit and talk to him for hours and promise not to leave him if he did not leave me. I would tuck him in and give him another medicine before bidding good night.

Next morning I woke to my mother’s cries. Fauna lay still, her eyes closed looking as if she was sleeping peacefully. I cried, I screamed and called his name — “Fauna, wake up! Its drizzling outside. Let’s go and play...” Tears ran down my face but I was hardly aware. My mother tried to console me. She took Fauna’s body and had it buried near the Dakshinkali Temple. What more could I give Fauna except my love? I left a garland of flowers on his grave. I never knew that that February night would be the last night I tucked him in. If I had known, I would never have left him alone. All day long, I kept thinking of all the times we spent together.

I can still see him in mind’s eye, feel his warmth in my heart and the pain makes tear flow yet again. Whenever it drizzles outside or the sun hides behind clouds, I feel his absence and begin to miss him terribly. For one week, my heart denied his death. I stayed in shock and did not think that I would ever recover. I never thought that I would lose him and I have no words left to explain how it broke me down. Even as I write this, tears brim in my eyes.