Full width home advertisement

Post Page Advertisement [Top]

Doggone It, Change for the Better in 21 Days

Doggone It, Change for the Better in 21 Days
For the past few days both our dogs have been looking rather puzzled if not bewildered. Most of the time they are pretty much absorbed in their own little worlds but now they are not. Their ears prick every now and then, they lift their noses and sniff the air and then peer into the greenery at the bottom of the garden.
Their senses are more acute than ours so I have a pretty good idea of what they are trying to figure out: the lack of noise. Noise, not sound. Because there is plenty of soundof the kind we generally don’t get to hear any more in the cities—birdsong, the buzzing of bees, the whirr of dragonfly wings, the rustle of squirrels… Their canine cousins on the street, of course, are particularly bemused and alarmed by the sudden disappearance of humans altogether—their source of food as well as torment. Being inherently innocent and loving creatures, they are probably the only animals that may be actually lamenting our absence from their vicinity.
Many articles have come out recently about the return of wildlife to spaces they had been crowded out by obstreperous humans. These have also been roundly rebutted as fake news propounded by eco-warriors out to prove that humans need to go back to Luddite times in order to save what is left of our precious planet.
Be that as it may, our dogs certainly sense something is different. No sounds of traffic in the daytime and obnoxious post-midnight vrooms of supercars and superbikes on empty Delhi boulevards. No sounds of VIP sirens, no telltale clangour of metal cutters, hammers and drills signalling breakneck construction work.
While the mango trees are heavy with spring flowers and the shedding neems are creating bewitching eddies of yellowing leaves in the characteristically whimsical Chaitra breeze, there is also a perceptible clearness in the air. No acrid tang of petrol fumes or tar, just the distinct perfume of lime blossoms and desi roses.
Funny how living in a big, blustery megapolis inevitably dulls our senses into submission. That’s why we don’t ever miss what we cannot see, smell or hear anymore. Everyday life is so frenetic anyway, that we don’t have time to wonder about what’s no longer there, except during occasional bouts of nostalgia.
They say 21 days are all that’s needed to break a habit. The same can be said about forming a habit. The most challenging one to give up would be the way we’ve lived our lives till this point: the excess, the waste, the thoughtlessness of convenience. And the most challenging one to take up would be living mindfully.
There is plenty of time to think, calculate and practice all that changing such a deeply ingrained habit will entail. Any doubts about whether we truly do with less—food, drink, entertainment, shopping, travel, expensive leisure—can be easily dispelled in the ensuing 21 days. The benefits of less are already appearing.
And our two dogs—not to mention the long-eared, sharp-nosed, eagle-eyed pets in countless homes across Indian cities—are the first ones to realise this, quite instinctively. Look at them closely, and you will see the question in their trusting eyes, the perplexed quiver in their noses and the quizzical cocking of their ears.
Even me, with my utterly deficient adult human senses (babies are far more in tune with nature than us hardened adults) can hear, smell and feel the difference. Inspired, I find myself staring eagerly skywards looking for that rarest sight of all for city-dwellers—stars. But it’s still too early yet for that final miracle.

No comments:

Post a comment

Bottom Ad [Post Page]