Bet you’ve been missing us. It’s been long but the fact is, we found ourselves in a pickle
all over again. After our last meeting (Have you heard these?), Mom’s friend asked how we could have left out ‘in a pickle’ from our list. Well, we were being generous in not stealing the glory from the Bard of Avon himself. Oh well! The truth is we forgot – not surprising considering we hadn’t been in a pickle in a while. The last month has put us back where we started from – in that pickle.
It all began with Diwali. Two nights before Diwali, on a day called Dhan Teras, Mom started putting out these little bowls with fire at the doors. They were intriguing and we did sniff around but the flame pushed us away. We weren’t going to have that, you know. So on the third night, when Mom put more of them all over the house, we grabbed our chance. We can’t understand what set Mom off. All that happened was that when she went around to light them after placing them all over, she was mystified that they wouldn’t light. It’s not our fault that without her specs, she could not see that the bowls were empty. How did she expect them to light without the oil and the wick? Being the Sherlock Holmes that she is, she after a few misfires cottoned (what a pun!) on. Our faces reeking with ’til’ oil had something to do with it, we guess. She had to set things up all over again – only in one room, mind you, since we didn’t have the time (or the stomach – another Bard-ish pun 😉) to get beyond that. The volcano exploded. Best to leave the rest unsaid, but it was worth it to see her bending, frowning, peering, and rising with ‘I don’t believe it’ written all over her face 😈😈)
When we said the volcano exploded, we didn’t know that was just the prologue. Half an hour after Mom had finished, the world went boom all around us. Whizzes and bangs enveloped us, a funny smell crept up our sensitive nostrils. We stood there, frozen, shaking, barking as every sound startled us. For once, we envied Big Bro II, Bisquit, who at 15 is partially deaf and could not hear most of the noise although at some points even he jumped up. We fell to our knees and prayed for mercy. The sky was falling on our heads, the gods were angry that we had sampled some of the offering to them, and we vowed never to even sniff at oil, cotton, diya ever again. We are proud to say we stuck to our vow for a whole two days. But the gods did not let up on their fury and we spent a most miserable night. The next morning even humans were complaining of a pall of grey over their city. We still can’t believe our little sampling led to such apocalypse. It was not a pickle but a PICKLE that we were in.
As if that was not enough, we soon found ourselves in trouble thanks to Bisquit who was staying with us. He went back with Nani yesterday, and we aren’t sure if that makes us happy or sad. We know Mom is sad because she looks at his corners wistfully and calls us ‘Bisquit’, we hope, by mistake. We’d hate to be re-christened as his clones. Just to prove our individuality, we will now speak as ourselves – especially since our pickles were different this time.
Zaza: I am a kindly soul, friendly at heart. My ever-wriggling behind and tail proves that to all except Bisquit. That stuck-up creature would always turn away from them. He would jump as if he had been beaten, just to get Mom’s attention. Now, if I am showing friendliness and he turns away, you don’t have to be rocket scientist to understand my tail will slap his face. He wouldn’t respond even when I took my favourite ball and rolled it in his direction. It was the most frustrating two months ever – he ignored me so much that my self-confidence and belief in my charming self nosedived. Anyone know a therapist?
To make matters worse, the old boy would eat in slow motion. Mom would give him his meals miles away from us, out in the balcony. By the time he was halfway through his meal, we would be at the closed door, quivering with anticipation. It took just a crack to get our noses in, charge to his bowl and polish off what was left there. You cannot leave food lying in a bowl while you take a walk around the balcony and eat in fits and starts over a half hour period and not expect us to take matters in our hands. I think Mom was being a wee bit melodramatic when she accused us of being the cause of his starvation. We may have got a few yells, but it was worth it to beat her in a dash even while she was ‘keeping an eye on things’ and get the better of her and her darling Bisquit…😈 even though it meant that she had to give us a dose of digestive syrup afterwards to settle our over-worked tummies.
Snuggles: I have gone through life convinced I am Mom’s favourite. She can’t love
Bisquit more. I had to keep reminding her of this. Why should she lift Bisquit in her arms? Obviously, I will leap up and try and pull him down by his tail. Her arms is not his place – they are mine. And if he falls asleep next to Mom, I am going to wuff and bark in the pitch designed to shake him up, deaf as he may be. And just for fun, to get a bit of my own back, I’d bark and wuff when he was fassst asleep and watch him wake up with a start and stiffly get to his feet, walk around a bit to get comfortable again, fall asleep, and then repeat the process. But I think I overdid things when I tried the stunt to make him move away, off his quilt next to Mom’s bed, at 3 a.m. If Mom had not been groggy, she would have burst. But he was next to her bed and her hand was trailing in sleep, on him. It was intolerable!
And then, the study is our realm. Not his. We’ve grown up there, from sleeping in cardboard cartons there to snoring under chairs. Bisquit does not have the right to love sitting there as Mom works when all it takes is a step in his direction and a whine to get him to his feet and walk away. My love for Mom turned me into a roaring (barking, whining, wuffing) lion, except when Bisquit once in a while got exasperated and barked back. One bark of Lord Bisquit was enough to send me scurrying away. Boy, I was not in a pickle but in a Biqckle,…
So, we get back together and sign off as SnuZa. If you want to see us quickly, pray that we stay out of pickles and Biqckles. We are still miffed though: our Folks allow us to bark up to a point and then shush us. But when Bisquit barked after days of indifferent silence at a crow threatening his breakfast, Mom got most excited – he reminded her of his puppy days she exclaimed. She forgot to shush him. Not fair!