The Stray Dog at My Office
Like humans, dogs love company, of both dogs and humans, but I admire them for their capacity to also remain absolutely alone, find their own activity – and just laze around happily without the need for a ball to play or a human to pet them.
We have such a stray dog outside our office. I have seen her grow up from a small puppy. She is very loving and comes and greets everyone warmly. She rejoices when someone gives her a pat, and moves on when someone ignores her. When no one is around, she finds a perch in the shade somewhere, and either dozes off, or lies down watching the world go by.
She has no assurance where her next meal is coming from. She has no family, no permanent friends, no one she can rely on. Yet she is happy – you can make out by the way her tail gives little wags at times even when she is asleep. If she does not have anyone petting her for days, she doesn’t sulk or complain – she comes back without malice, wagging her tail with gusto to see if you will give her a pat or a stroke. And then she walks off contentedly !
By Ali Khwaja
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Leading Banjara Academy's online email counselling team of volunteer-counsellors, I realize it is not an easy task reaching out to a person one has never met, never seen, without the added advantage of gestures, eye contact, a gentle reassuring touch, tone of voice and yet providing empathy, positive strokes, making the person feel heard and understood.
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Hats off to all the volunteeer-counsellors of Banjara Academy who have been carrying on this work silently, anonymously for the last couple of years. Truly commendable! - Ali Khwaja
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