There was something about the street dogs in India that I resonated with; maybe it was their suffering, rejected, loveless, desperate lives, or their scarred, scabby, skeleton, mangy bodies. But I think it was their shiny eyes that pleaded for love, affection and acceptance, the same eyes I saw looking back at me when I looked in the mirror. The Spice Girls, Beckham and The Street Dogs of India
I truly understood how they felt, all alone in the world to fend for themselves, and I knew I had to help them. I started by just giving them a biscuit and some love and was amazed at how docile and friendly they become, soaking up every second of my attention.
They soon became the best friends I could ever have—loyal, loving and so much fun.
~ ~ ~
Looking down into the concrete electricity box on the middle kora—Tibetan name for the circumambulation path around holy sites—of the main temple, I was delighted to see that Stripe, the black dog with a white Stripe around her neck, had given birth to five babies.
“How beautiful” I exclaimed to a very proud Stripe, who opened her legs to give me a full view, of the sightless balls of fluff with four tiny legs, that were wiggling about to get closer to her swollen tits.
My heart melted as I stretched my arm down into that concrete hole and gentle engulfed one of the fluff balls. It smelt all milky, fresh and new, as it snuggled into my hand, and I gently flipped it over to check the sex. One after the other….girl, girl, girl, girl, and girl… five beautiful healthy girls! —I decided to name them after a famous girl band called the Spice Girls.
I would go daily to bring food for Stripe, check their health and clean up their home. My heart would almost explode with love, as I watched these fat, fluffy balls of curiosity and naughtiness, slowly grow, open their eyes and explore their surroundings.
Once they became independent each Spice Girl found their way out of the temple and into the town but ‘Ginger Spice, who is twice as nice’ stayed on. She rocked the temple and eventually became the queen and one of my number one doggies.
She was an amazing singer and would burst into song with her tail propelling around and around every time she saw me coming. We would sit together in the garden in the middle kora of the temple every afternoon with her mother, Stripe, sharing food, love and meditating.
Stripe’s husband, David Beckham, was a very handsome dog, with long, soft brown fur and big brown eyes. He had been missing for a few days, and I was starting to fear the worst. Until one day my friend shouted down to me from the outer kora “David Beckham is on the kora!”. I was completely relieved and overjoyed as Stripe, Ginger and I ran up the steps to greet him.
The reunion was a magnificent ball of love as we all group hugged and tail-wagging dogs all sang to each other in a language only they knew. Then through the fur, paws, and tails, I noticed quite a crowd was coming up to the outer kora.
“Who’s coming?” I asked a passing monk thinking that a high lama must be inside the temple.
“David Beckham the famous footballer is here!” he said running excited towards the gathering crowd in front of me.
“No, no! this is David Beckham!” I shouted after him as I cuddled the brown-eyed beauty.
It wasn’t easy to convince them that David Beckham was actually a dog! But the crowd of red-robed monks, nuns and pilgrims eventually figured out that there was no famous footballer anywhere in sight. They slowly went back to their practice and me and my balls of fur went back to our cuddles.
Where had David Beckham been? One lady had kidnapped him for her pet. I mean who wouldn’t want to cuddle up with David Beckham? Man and dog were both fit and handsome. But my handsome boy had escaped her clutches and found his way home.
When he went missing again, I went to her house just to see if he was there and he was! My poor handsome Beck’s was lying down all sad, behind the metal gated entrance of her courtyard.
“Woof, woof, woof” he shouted at me through the bars, which I’m sure meant “Get me out of here”.
“Hello, hello, open the gate!” I shouted through the bars, banging on them until a little old Nepali lady came to the courtyard.
“Please give me back my dog,” I told her sternly.
“He’s my dog” she argued back.
“I’m not here to argue with you, just open the gate and we let the dog decide” I insisted.
As soon as she opened the gate David Beckham ran out singing in all kinds of doggie tones and entangled himself around my legs.
“He lives in the main temple; you can come and visit him there, anytime. But do not kidnap him again or I’ll be back!” I told her firmly. Then Becks and I walked away to make our way back home.
~ ~ ~
At the same time Stripe was pushing out her five babies, Ruby was also busy in the bushes in the cemetery next door to the temple, popping out three beautiful boys—Sambogakaya, Nirmanakaya and Dharmakaya.
Sambogakaya and Nirmanakaya soon moved into the Hindu temple across the street, but Dharmakaya stayed faithful to the cemetery.
He was a big strong boy and very demure—the master yogi of the cemetery and another of my number one doggies. Every morning he would wait at the entrance of the main temple. Then we would walk into the cemetery together to sit on a temple roof and meditate there.
The only problem with this daily set-up was Dharmakaya and Ginger Spice were rivals for my time, love and affection. Ginger would hide somewhere in the cemetery and when she was sure Dharmakaya was sleeping or in deep meditation, she would sneak up the temple steps to the roof and cuddle into my lap with a smile of victory.
After she had had her fill of love and kisses, her skinny little arse would then sneak back off to wait for me in the main temple, the sleeping Dharmakaya not realising anything about our secret rendezvous.
And that is how life rolled in Doggie Town, at the main temple.
Meanwhile, on the streets of Doggie Town, there were even more escapades…