My Bubbly Life..Ch. 3-Coming home to California!

Raman took me home to CALIFORNIA! I had no idea how wonderful this relationship was going to turn out to be. I was just excited to fly for the first time! It was scary, exciting and wonderful all at the same time!

This isn't me, but this is how we
boarded the aircraft!
We had left GEB around 1.00pm for a flight out of JFK at 3.00pm(raman told me so!).  It was my first flight ever! We were allowed to get in well before the others (I learnt that it was called pre-boarding..we were to do loads more of that in the years to come!) I was confused.  First, we entered a door into a room that was really really long.  

There were so many chairs and just a thin road in the middle! I could barely fit into was I supposed to take Raman through it safely?I was going to have to let myself be bumped by the chairs to give space for Raman.  We went through a few  rows of chairs, and then we came to Raman's seat. Hold on! where was I supposed to sit? There was no place for me? I first thought the thin road would do fine, but Raman pulled me inside and made me sit at his feet...I sat there, scared now because this room was shaking faintly, and the noise? I was scared.  I had my head facing the thin road (thats where the people walked before getting to their seats!)

Soon, I saw people start coming through the door! They were all carrying bags, and bumping seats, and many times I had to turn my head away in time or would have had my face in someone's bag!  There were so many people!  There were also those ladies, one of whom had spoken kindly to me when we entered the door.

If I'd been scared of the soft shaking and the noise, I was terrified when after a while, when everyone had sat down, the plane (for thats what I was on!) suddenly shook hard, the noise went even higher..I went out of my mind! I wanted to run, hide.  I tried hiding under Raman's legs.  I was trembling so hard, that I wasn't sure if it was my trembling that was shaking the plane or if it was the other way around! Then I felt my heart slowly rising and making its way to my mouth.  What was happening, the plane was moving, but I couldn't feel any bumpety bump, like I had earlier on as a puppy! I felt light and funny ( I was to learn later after flying a zillion times that this is what you felt when the plane took off from the ground!)

This went on for nearly 15 minutes, when I felt Raman bend down and remove his winter boots! I was still trembling with fear from the strange feeling I couldn't describe.  Then, I felt Raman's leg on my back, warm and soothing.  I felt comforted.  I was with someone who cared..I was not afraid anymore.  I settled down and from then on, enjoyed the flight!  The lovely ladies (stewardess) came and played with me.  It was fun! I slept  a while and then felt the plane hit something, roll and slow down!

We had arrived! I was so happy to be back on my feet.  We left the plane before the others, and soon I was pulling at the harness hard, eager to see the new place, but more importantly I had to desperately relieve myself! C'mon, it had been hours since I had done my business! Aah! that was a relief! Now, I would find out what California was all about!

California smelt wonderful! It was crisp, bright and sweet! I was going to love it here! I wagged my tail as hard and fast as I could possibly manage! Oh! I loved Raman more for bringing me here!

We reached home in San Jose, which was a smelt wonderfully of Raman but I was a wee bit disappointed that I didn't have much room to run around...and I loved doing that! :( However, a few seconds later, I smelt what I had been looking forward to, for such a long time..almost all the way through the journey! FOOD! Yipppy! crunch, crunch, gulp, gulp..I,..gulp, umm, crunch..was...crunch...famished! Ahhh...thirsty now! glug, glug, slurp, a tummy happy gal now!

One of Raman's friend called Krishnamurthy, came with us as Raman took me out for a final 'gal's business'.  This place was awesome! The smells! It would take me hours and hours to get my fill of it all!

That night, despite the fact that I was in a strange place, with a strange man (who was definitely becoming less of a stranger each passing second, and whom I already loved), I slept peacefully...happy and content! It was Sunday,  Feb 27, 2000!

This was Home! You see me here with Raman, standing just outside the Condo Complex.  This is where for the next few years( about five or six), we would wait to be picked up by friends from work.

I am home..sitting by raman as he works.  Its not a fun thing to do.  Just sit while he works, but I have learnt to be patient, to lie down and rest, to gather my strength, so that when he is done working, and plays with me, its fun fun fun! He worked from home that Monday, the day after we came home.

 I love giving my paw to him.  He holds it gently in his hands, and gives it a gentle squeeze.  I squeeze back to show him I care too!

We play with the Kong, shake hands some more, then he goes back to his work.  This was our daily routine, of course, other than the  times he would take me out so I can relieve myself.

Sitting by myself waiting 
for Raman.

This is such a cozy position!

When things were slow, like when Raman was at work, or working from home, it would be a quiet, lie-down period for me..but when he travelled, it was rush rush, fun fun...but, I always found reason to be happy about..I even made a friend here! Her name was Neesha.. I think ! She hadn't made it as a guide dog, but she was fun to play with!
We went to work at IBM Almaden from that Tuesday, March 1, 2000 for the first time (for me).  I was excited, because it was my first official work day at his work place! I was excited as always and was pleasantly surprised to find so many people who worked with Raman, smile when they saw me.

As soon as we reached his desk, I was pleasantly surprised (this seems to be happening to me quite regularly if you notice!) to find..".toys!"  I smelt belonged to another dog, I was sure of that, and it had Raman's smell on it as well..(I was to later find out that it belonged to Aster, who had been Raman's Guide dog before me..he often called me Aster all through my life!)..there was a Kong..and a bone, partly chewed! I tentatively took it into my good..sniff sniff sniff...I wrapped my tongue around it..ahh..nice...I positioned it just right, and sank my teeth into it...crrrrunncchhh! Within seconds, I had reduced that bone, that Aster had just managed to chew in all that time, into tiny bits of unrecognizable junk! Oh! the satisfaction it gave me! Feeling very proud of my achievement, I went and lay down in a corner, aiming at trying to reduce the Kong to the same state...only, that turned out to be harder!

Soon, I was wagging tail around all of them.  They all came out with us, to show us around, so that I could learn the different places inside the campus where Raman needed to go to.  What fun! All of us went for a walk for a mile around the lab complex every afternoon after lunch! I found a spot that looked just right to do my business..and another perfect spot, to do my 'other' business :)!

There I was, tugging at the leash, pulling Raman, urging him to walk faster so that I could take in all the interesting smells, sounds and sights around the complex, and then, there were the dozen or so who came with us, laughing and talking and enjoying themselves, am sure in their own "Humanny" way! I felt sorry for them, for they had no tails to wag to show their excitement and tongue was out, I was panting from the adventure and loved being pampered! Raman had the rule in place...NO petting when the harness was they would all wait, till he took the harness me, that was a sign that I was "off" duty! Who said work was tough? It was nothing but sheer enjoyment! (letting you all on a little secret...we learnt later that, those people who came on that afternoon walk..stopped at those two 'special' places I stopped at, even on the days we weren't there! Imagine that! )

We would go for a walk every morning and evening around the lab complex too, but didn't always have people come with us during those times.. So went a couple of months..and then...began our exciting travel adventures..and oh! my puppy life...weren't they the best years ever?...wait till you hear about them!

April 27, 2011

1 comment:

  1. FOOD! Yipppy! crunch, crunch, gulp, gulp..I,..gulp, umm, crunch..was...crunch...famished! Ahhh...thirsty now! glug, glug, slurp, slurp.. This place made me to run into the kitchen to drink or munch something(I had pomegranet juice Aarthi).Nice one .