Jungtina Jamir

I love animals, all sorts. Maybe, except some creepy crawly ones. When I was young, my aim was to be a missionary doctor. Then I wanted to be a missionary veterinary doctor. As in like ‘missionary’ had to come before all professions. Sigh!! Kids na! 

However, I ain’t no man or beast doc today. No doubt I love animals and yes I did dream of milking cows, operating birds’ broken wings, saving cats from drowning, delivering piglets and all sorts of things like that. Animals love me too. I can way pass any of them without the fear of being attacked. I know a lot of people who are afraid of domestic animals. Not me but. So what’s this got to do with my writing?? The reason maybe because I am about to tell you an ‘anecdote’ that made me change my mind about animals loving me.

College days were almost like having a job. Mass Com meant lot of technical work, meaning more hrs spent in the studio, or the ‘den’, so we’d call. We were busy preparing our semester project that would go into the reports. Around 7:30 my friend Meren and I headed back to the hostel we stayed.  

Delhi, 7 o’clock:  The night is still young. We got out from the extremely crowded bus almost reeking of ………….. We were late for dinner so we got ourselves the massively-big ‘chicken egg roll’ to eat. 

We started to walk towards our hostel. It was summer. Days were like 40 degree plus. Dressed in tees, shorts, floaters and big rack sacks, we looked like a couple of Chinese tourists in an Indian bazaar. You see, our hostel was near this vegetable bazaar and one thing you’ll always find are stray cows. Big ones!! Its silly but city cows are 10 times bigger than cows here. Promise!! 

We waded through the thundering- typhoon crowd. Then we came across this Big Black Cow (BBC). It was the biggest one of the herd there. It was feeding on a pile of garbage. 3 years in Delhi and cows were never a threat to me. Or so I thought. Cow or no cow I usually would pass by one even if it meant 2 cm away from it. That night too, I didn’t see it as a cow’s cow. While Meren avoided BBC, I passed it by like about a few centimeters that might have actually touched its huge bulging stomach. Or did I?? Because the next moment BBC had its iron like head on my stomach. It had its body turned the other side and it couldn’t possibly see me come. What on earth happened?? I still don’t know. I think getting hit by a truck feels the same!!

Unfortunately BBC’s head went under my Tee, and within a blink of an eye I was off the ground swinging in an Indian Bazaar on a cows head. I don’t even know what happened. I couldn’t hear or see anything. The next moment I was kneeling on the road. I felt my stomach with my hand, I couldn’t feel anything. NUMB!!.  All the handsome rickshaw pullers gathered. Yea right, like some knight in shining armor would have come! Meren was shocked to pieces. I wish I could have seen her face then. 

Now, a cow is a holy animal for the Hindus and that’s the reason why the onlookers happily & gently ‘shooed’ it away murmuring some chants. If my dad was there he would have killed BBC slap-bang. Hehehe. 

SENSELESS was what I felt.  Meren asked fanatically if I was ok and if I could walk. I said ‘cow’.(I meant to say  ‘yes’) Remember the Vietnam War movies where the hero would carry his injured comrade to safety?? It was something like that. Meren carried my bag and me too. Would you believe after all that happened I still had the egg roll intact in my left hand??? Scientists call it the shock-grip. My left palm won’t open at all. (There was a cobbler who sat outside the hostel gate. He used his tools to open up my palm. Ok ok! That’s exaggeration). 

What happened after reaching the hostel is yet another story. It’s so crazy that I wish to stop here. Yea, my girlfriends will kill me if I tell you what they did to me!! (Maybe later in another Reporters diary?? Sssshhhh). Well, the point about animals not loving me all is this. My sense of do-not-be-afraid of animals has been altered ever since I met BBC. For all I care, BBC’s horns weren’t tough enough to kill me. I managed to live with a bloody slash left to my stomach. It’s still there, the scar!

Meren went to Delhi some weeks back. She saw BBC, same place. Ya, it seems it’s still there chewing on piles of garbage and missing me like crazy. Eekkk!