Tuesday, March 24, 2009

My Sentiments Are Hurt

I have always admired Maneka Gandhi. She is one of the most honest leaders we have and she is not as popular as she deserves to be. I have read she can be rude, but I can understand. Many animals lovers find it very difficult to understand how those who don't care for animals are not able to understand how they feel.

It's like my cat has dozed off while cleaning my hand, with a bit of his tongue still hanging out.

(Nikon D60 is not very polite, it woke him up)

My mom calls, I pick the cell phone and try to pull my hand from under his face, and he immediately presses a soft claw to hold the hand tighter, and snuggles, still more softly into my palm. Eyes squeezing, shutting even tighter. My mom thinks having animals at home ties you down, but I irritate her by telling her what the cat just did.
She is horrified, "Babies do that... your brother was like that as a baby! Why have you got this cat so used to you, what will he do if he is ever separated from you?"

He will die of fear, anxiety, hunger and predators. It's like leaving a city child in a jungle.

Now if a neighbour was to tell me they think cats are cunning, cruel, selfish or bring bad luck, I will try and show them why I disagree, because there was a time I thought the same.

We were coming home after a party one wet, cold (eerie) night, a long drive on an empty road, huge moaning trees, wild rains and then we notice something small moving in the middle of the road. A frog? A snail? There was no way to make sure it doesn't get crushed, so we had to stop to push it aside. In the headlights, I saw a little kitten, soaked and shivering ... looked around for a mother, there was none, so we picked it up and brought it home 'for the night'.

I soon learnt why those who loved cats (Usha Pisharody, Reema, Aneela and Alankrita who claims hers is the handsomest cat in the world :D) just loved them. Maybe it's the way they wake up, looking sleepy, like babies? And then where do you leave them, knowing they can't really take care of themselves?

But I have no idea how to feed or care for a baby sparrow.

Found this one also in the middle of a dark road yesterday, but now she is here, cheeping aloud for food.

Is it true that now that we have 'touched' it, it's parents will reject her? What does one do? We are hoping she will learn to fly better, and fly away. We have a cat at home and this extra responsibility is just not welcome. But this bird looks as much like a baby as a kitten does. Anybody seen a puppy learning to walk? This chick who can fly a little, was slipping on the kitchen counter, feet splaying like a puppy's.

If we leave it, it will not be able to take care of itself. I know crows will eat it alive within hours.

In a similar situation in the past I had emailed to Maneka Gandhi. I was a total stranger, but she was very helpful. I have heard of others who have spoken to her and she has helped them. Now which other political leader can we think of who would have done this? Replied to email or picked her phone to respond to an aam janta?

So just think, here's a fan, who likes her even though she belongs to a party openly supporting a candidate who has allegedly made a shocking, unconstitutional hate speech. And that candidate is her son. It troubles me, I feel betrayed.
My sentiments are hurt.

NOTE Something unbelievable happened to the bird next day, guess what? A special award for the correct guess!!! I had never dreamt that possible, now she is best possible hands... guess whose???

Edited to add:
Find the answer here :)


@lankr1ta said...

Animals are really sweet things- and they all- irrespective of species respond to love.
You could put the sparrow in a cage, in a room the cat doe snot go to and feed it some boiled and cooled dal.

Indian Home Maker said...

@Alankrita Thank you :) Will keep in mind, added a note, please take a guess ....!

Bones said...

What can she do - she is Varun Gandhi's mother after all...She can't abandon him...Did something go wrong in the way she brought him up or is he entirely responsible for his actions? Whatever the case maybe, it will always be blamed on his upbringing...

Smitha said...

'he immediately presses a soft claw to hold the hand tighter, and snuggles, still more softly into my palm. Eyes squeezing, shutting even tighter' - That was so precious! I have never had a pet - but always wanted to.. perhaps once we get back to India for good..

As for Maneka Gandhi - I always respected her too.. She was one of those politicians who had some purpose, some conviction about her.. Yes, and I totally agree that it was so disappointing to see her son's words.. I hope she comes out publicly against him..

Indian Home Maker said...

@Smitha That is unlikely to happen, and it upsets me.
But pets are also a lot of responsibility and commitmen, so if we get one we are tied down sort of ...

@Bones I think we will all be left wondering. Or maybe he has gone on his dad.

Indian Home Maker said...

@Smitha, @Bones Please guess what happened to this bird!!! It's amazing...

@lankr1ta said...

IHM on loving cats, I have no idea why! Mine have always bullied me, done what they wanted and only been sweet and cuddly when they felt like,. ditto with dogs- but their love is just totally expectation free- not about food- just a "I trust you, my person" kind of love. Our cat does not eat when he is alone at home. He eats only when we are at home- and around his food bowl. Otherwise he just sits by the window.

Indian Home Maker said...

@Alankrita Lol Mine does all this too!! Yes it's exactly that.. "I trust you, my person" kind of love!!!Mine even argues, and when he disagrees with a command, err request :)

But you did not guess what happened to the bird??

DewdropDream said...

Birdie got adopted by bigger birdie? :D

It's true that young birds touched by human hands will not survive the wild... I saw it for myself once. I tried to rescue a baby sparrow that had fallen down, unfortunately it was deemed unfit for sparrow society and I actually saw other sparrows gathering around this tiny helpless baby and kill it. Don't think I've cursed myself more ever again or sworn to not interfere in chick matters not my own.

Love the photo of your cat :) I've heard that having a cat can make you behave like one... but I'm guessing you'll say that is untrue. So what IS it like, to have a cat?

And I honestly cannot fathom what went wrong with Varun Gandhi. Just how is a modern-day LSE educated individual who has seen the world and is closely acquainted with the political history of his country capable of such twisted ideology?! and hate! And moreover, what is wrong with the EC? How can they have let this man still contest the elections! It's illegal right, to propagate hate and religious fanaticism the way he has been?

Chikki said...

I think her parents came to pick her up along with the luggage??No??

mindspace said...

did ur daughter adopt the birdie?
hey pls do more posts on ur pets.. it will be lovely to read them.. i love pets but someone cant gather courage to hv a puppy or cat.. can only manage birds/fish etc so far..

Mystic Margarita said...

I admire Maneka Gandhi, too, as a person who believes in a cause and does her best to do something about it. But then there only this much a parent can do, you know, and despite the best upbringing and environment, children do turn out to be black sheep! In Varun Gandhi's case, I think we can blame the dad's genes due to any other viable alternative.

Did the baby bird's parents come to get it?

mindspace said...

but that wont be unbelievable.. so my second guess would be - some bird adopted this one n welcomed into her nest. that would be the best thing to hv happened i guess..

Smitha said...

@IHM - I think somebody adopted the bird - Did your cat adopt the bird :) Or was it your dog?

Solilo said...

Did Cat help this little Sparrow?

I had a pet Squirrel. It was not exactly a pet but you know I got inspired after reading Mahadevi Verma's Gillu back then and started feeding Squirrels. One came to my window sill everyday. I started calling him Gillu too. Aah miss him!

I have written to Maneka Gandhi long back and she replied too (may be her office) but she did. It was on some animal rescue issue. I still have the letter somewhere. It was in the early 90s.

She can't help it. Varun Gandhi is her son and the guy just gave BJP what it asked for, a controversy. Otherwise he was getting sidelined and few months ago it is said that he was even planning to join Congress but Sonia Gandhi wouldn't accept his mother but only him. So finally I guess he learned that to make an impact he needs to bring alive his dad in him. And see the result. Sadly! controversy is what works most times.

Smitha said...

@IHM - I would agree with you on Varun Gandhi - he probably has gone on his dad..

wordjunkie said...

Here's a wild guess... you're cat adopted the bird?

And I can empathise with Maneka, even if I am offended by her son.

Pixie said...

I'm not too much of a cat lover... :-D
but, yes your sentiments about animals are quite understandable and true... :)
As for Maneka Gandhi's son - she can't do or say anything now, can she? he is after all her son...
Did the sparrow learn how to fly and flew out the window and go adopted by some random other sparrows?! :D

@lankr1ta said...

1. your cat adopted the bird
2. your mum decided to take the bird in

Indyeah said...

yay!You wrote THE post! I had been so curious:)
alle look at your lil baby and the second one too:)

guess?well she is ine Sher Khan's hands:)he is watching over his new 'baby' like a momma bear:))
isnt he?:)

Maneka Gandhi was someone I used to admire and admire still...her son doesnt deserve another word ..
too much news ..all dedicated to the idiot!

Anonymous said...

I would appreciate her if she voiced her dissent over her son's actions! But she won't, of course, we can 'understand'. Isn't it?

At other times, whenever I've heard about her, its always been creating some issues over bollywood movies using animals.

I think she was so concerned about animal rights, she forgot to mention Human rights to her son.

Ordinary Guy said...

:P LOL.... IHM.... too good.... :)

yes, Going with the popular comments here, I also think that:
1. your dog or cat adopted the sparrow.
2. her "own kind" came and are now protecting her.
3. your kids are taking care of the sparrow..

:) No words to say when it come to Varun gandhi.....

Sahaja said...

Awwwwwwww thats such sweet thing u have done IHM!! I care a lot for animals in the sense, i tend to show my care by not allowing something to happen to them, but i somehow have a feeling that i cant take good care of them as a pet!! u have really inspired me in overcoming this feeling.

and the special prize should be mine, Ofcourse its Maneka Gandhi's hands!! Am I correct?

Usha Pisharody said...

Gosh, another uncanny connection! Picked up my little Malu,my cat, one dark dark December evening from the middle of the road, along with her sister. Poor thing, the sister did not survive beyond a few days. Worm infestation.
But Malu did; and you brought those memories from about 3 years back rushing in :) Thank you!

My guess is that the baby sparrow has been adopted by Sher Khan :) The unlikeliest of happenings always happen, when it comes to these members of the family:)

And as for Maneka; in a sense I do feel sorry for her. She had shown an indomitable spirit the way she carried on with her worthy, and sometimes politically questionable choices in life, but it's really thrown her the most difficult of them now. It would be so easy for us to demand, perhpas, or at least expect her to distance herself from the way the Son has progressed, but....

Yes, she is someone I have always admired for the way she has stood up for animals, any kind, every kind... from those abused on the roads, to those in homes. All the more I can understand now, the indirect hurt one feels knowing that someone as sensitive as her, has to be what she is today, because of her son.

Loved the picture too!

R.K. said...

The Cat adopted sparrow ????

Thats my guess !

Little ones know no boundaries,

Some big ones however enjoy the cracks in soil !
Now guess who's the one who just got bigger ;) ??

Phoenixritu said...

Menaka is rude, abrupt but totally committed to animals and nature. I have met her and I know that. Pity about her son ...

The sparrow flew away?

sm said...

i am sure mother of varun must have cried when she was hearing his speech, a female a leader who can not see animals suffer ,how can she bear and see that enemies hand be cut off.

very nice article like it

Reema said...

Ooooh!! so cute :) Hey tell me fast what happened to the bird. I cant guess :)

@lankr1ta said...

I don't think "anything" went wrong wit V Gandhi. He was just trying to get away with what a lot of other politicians get away with. Unfortunately he is more popular than he though he was- maybe because of his (in)famous name and clan. He probably doe snot believe in that rhetoric- just spouts it for votes. Being double faced and political has nothign to do with education.

vimmuuu said...

The baby sparrow said,"thanks IHM!!" ????

Whaat? Im just thinking wild !!! Anything could happen, you see !!

or did Maneka herself come down to adopt it???

Im still thinking...still thinking....still...

Piper .. said...

ohh what a cutie he is! :):) Your cat, I mean. And what happened to the lil birdie? Is it friends with Mr. Cat?? :):)

Biju Mathews said...

How sweet!!

I know who adopted the birdie. Your hubby!! Right? Of course I'm right!!

Now, the award please!!

I too love cats. Before I went abroad for a contract job, I stayed with almost 8 cats which I gave for adoption later. My neighbors used to get really pissed off and used to give me really weird looks. Ha ha

Keep Blogging!!

Aneela Z said...

IHM..ab bata bhee dont keep us in suspense!!!
re: cats, yara even i thought pesho would not survive in the jungle of suburbia but the city cat has surprised me by how well she has coped with all the changes mashallah ...and shocked me by how she has become the backyard's don. will post on that soon.

Maya said...

The bird flew away, i think sparrows have become scarce these days, earlier there used to be many sparrows around our house, and many of the injured birds had found shelter in our house. Thou none of them lived too long.

Wouldnt your cat eat the sparrow, once a injured bulbul that i was taking care of was eaten by my katie (my cat). and by the way my cat looks exactly the same as u but now he has found a mate and rarely comes home.

On cats being cunnin ofcourse they are, they are not honest as dogs. My cat does a lot of chori and see he left us and hardly drops by once in a month.

Aaarti said...

:) I love reading about people and their pets.. Am not much of a cat lover [ am a dog person],but yes, they are cute and i have started liking them more than i did earlier thanks to a friend of mine who is crazy about cats!!

Did your cat adopt the bird and start taking care of it or did your mom take the birdie????

tell telll!!!! :D

Quirky Indian said...

I am a dog person. Have also had cats in the house while growing up, but there was never any connect....liked them as long as they were kittens.

The sparrow was adopted by the cat? That's pretty wild, isn't it? :-)

Quirky Indian

Varunavi said...

This post reminded me of my m-law,who brought a sparrow which was injured and was not able to walk,her two legs were broken.She took care of the bird till it died like a small baby,she cleaned the bird's wound,she has put a bandage on the bird's leg,and cried when it died.For few days she got attatched to it.She has 2 cats,2 dogs and few birds in her house.
I think ur cattie is taking care of ur bird.

Mama - Mia said...

oh well. it happens only in movies that a mother gives up her son to the police!

why take away the credit from her for all the good work she has done till date! there is as much blame you can put on parents for their kids' actions.

i think varun gandhi just cudnt take the amount of attention Rahul Gandhi has been getting and is just trying to get back. lure of power can make you do strange things. realise it even more afta watching Gulaal last night!

as for the sparrow! i am just gonna wait for a picture post as response! :D


Mamma mia! Me a mamma? said...

I love cats. Thre's something so mystical, mysterious and sensual about them. I also love T.S. Eliot's book of cat poems, "Old Possum's Book of Practical Cats". Love the A.L. Webber musical too.

As for Maneka Gandhi, I was never her biggest fan, but I admired her committment and the fact that she really believed in her pet causes.
As for her son, after a point in time, how much control can we exert on our children? Not everybody is a Rahul Gandhi or an Abhishek Bachchan.
And how easy it is for us to say, "Aah! His father was a bad egg, and the apple doesn't fall far from the tree after all!" Shouldn't we be held accountable for our own choices and mistakes?

Masood said...

Your mom took the bird?

Or did its parents find her?

hitch writer said...

oooh i so miss the sparrows... somehow i think here in indore tehre are no sparrows chirping...

At my native place bharuch we feed it a monaco biscuit on our dining table... and the sparrow comes and catches the fancy of my son... there are two actually who live in our compound only... the moment they come in the house you have switch of the fans and just hear them chirping... its so wonderful !!!

btw the cat and sparrow, did they become friends ?? the cat must be thinking here is some meal for me !!!lol...

Aathira said...

Aww.... you have a cat... I didn't know that!

Was the birdie adopted by your neighbours? Or did you cat decide to give a loving lick?

Smitha said...

@IHM - Dying of suspense here.. Came here to check if you revealed the secret!! Do tell!!

Pinku said...

I am a fan of Maneka too....still remember my visit to her home some ten years ago....was led right in through a dozen odd Indian dogs and was asked to sit ..she came and spoke like any other person no airs...i was floored.

Having said that...her son is a shame and a sham.

As for the guess...the bird is now under the protection of the cat....please send my award at my home address :)

Indian Home Maker said...

Chikki You are right, though I am sure you were just kidding :)

Decdrops dream You are right...but who were the big birds??
yes birds can also be cruel! I have saved owls twice from crows both the times in the morning .. will do a post, took photographs of the first one in Kerala...
Having a cat is like having a trusting little -very cute baby, but clean and toilet trained baby at home :) Their love is like a babies, they trust us if we have been kind to them, and they are also not all exact same, I have had many many cats, and all are different in temperaments :)

Mysic Margarita You are 100% right!
I agree, 'But then there only this much a parent can do...' And Menaka Gandhi has given no reason for us to consider her deserving of criticism for having brought up her son with hatred or intolerance. I still admire her.

Mindspace I will place a link for all animals posts on the side bar, for easy access, and I will also check to se if all are labeled animals.
The only animals who like to live with us, who actually adopt us on their own, are cats and dogs. But they are also such a huge responsibility.... once they ae there they are there to good.
Lol your guess is right but not exact:)

D said...

Perhaps you need to keep in mind that Maneka - the animal rights' activist may be different from Maneka - the politician or Maneka - the mother.

Indian Home Maker said...

@Smitha Not not my cat or dog ...:)

@Solilo She would have been great for Congress, sad about this!

And I love Mahadevi Verma we had her in our Hindi syllabus.
And that email to Menaka Gandhi I think she replied it herself :))
I agree they learnt a valuable lesson from PCM decided to create controversy.

@WordJunkie No not my cat!!! lol

@Pixie 'adopted by some random other sparrows?' No not random sparrows!

@Alankrita lol no :))

@Indyeah 'guess?well she is fine Sher Khan's hands:)he is watching over his new 'baby' like a momma bear:))
isnt he?:)'
No!!!! lol ha ha ha ha


G said...

What happened??
First guess: The cat and the bird are friends..?I am picturing the cat licking the bird all over and the bird happily chirping due to new found attention.
Second: The bird, while trying to fly out of your window did a good job and was accepted back into the bird kingdom i.e. not eaten by crows/other birds?
Now reveal the suspense please...

Indian Home Maker said...

I would appreciate her if she voiced her dissent over her son's actions! But she won't, of course, we can 'understand'. Isn't it?
I would understand if she lets her adult child be responsible for his own actions. Says nothing. I will be disappointed if she defends him.

At other times, whenever I've heard about her, its always been creating some issues over bollywood movies using animals.
You know they even stitched a lion's mouth in a fight scene with Dharmendra? Animal abuse is not taken seriously in India, but it should be Rakesh. Do you rememeber the time a circus tents caught fire and many animals were alive in cages? And I will write some post soon about the the things we do, abuses we overlook for our entertainment ... Have you read Black Beauty? Or White Fangs? I feel we really are cruel to animals and unless she checks these people who refuse to follow even basic rules, they love the controversy for the success of the movie.

I think she was so concerned about animal rights, she forgot to mention Human rights to her son.

Cruelty to animals is not a proof of our kindness for humans. She is doing something nobody in India has done except Mahavir, Buddha or Gandhi. I know of thousands of people who are hurt when they see cruelty to animals- unnecessary - she has given them a voice and only after she came in the scene did we start having all these animal shelters etc. I truly admire her. Also see how sincere she is, she is asking to be Petroleum minister, she is working for what she truly believes in. She is harming nobody, saving our environment, and speaking for those who cannot speak for themselves ...

Sahaja said...

hmm i read it firse....and i feel i was too hasty in reading last time....may be its adopted?n since u say amazing, might be some other for its own kingdom ? but who knows :)reveal the secret soon...i am checking from ofc :O

hitch writer said...

no reply to my comment.. sob sob...

Indian Home Maker said...

@Ordinary guy so many guesses is cheating! he he :)

@Sahaja lol NO!!!! Check the correct answer in the next post!

@Ushapisharody Knew about the connection from your first comment :))
Love to Malu (and the dogs too!)
'She had shown an indomitable spirit the way she carried on with her worthy, and sometimes politically questionable choices in life, but it's really thrown her the most difficult of them now. is very well said. She is one person who did not care to be politically correct!!! And one of the mos sincere, down to earth people I have seen.

Mama Why did you say that?
Son Because there were no pubs there.

@Phoenic ritu, but flew to where???
And I agree about Menaka Gandhi!
Coming over to read your CBSE stories too :)

@Sm This is something I am not able to understand ...:(

@Reema Now you can check the next post for answer :)

@Alankrita I agree completely.

@Vimmuuu oh yeah 'baby sparrow said thanks' he he he :)

@Piper No we didn't even let the bird see the cat, because I thought she was already frightened and traumatized, separated from parents and all, the sight of the cat would definitely frighten her.

@Biju Mathews, Eight cats!! I have had three at a time once.
lol your guess is not right!!

Indian Home Maker said...

@Aneela We want a Pesho post!!!!
Answered the mystery in the next post :)

@Maya My cat has no idea how to eat anything that requires grasping with hands :) We had left him with the SPCA and then brought him back the same afternoon...
But when we say cats are cruel, we do not realise that they are only following instincts ... unlike humans who kill for entertainment or pleasure, most animals kill for food.

Indian Home Maker said...

@hitchwriter You do that?!!! This is so sweet ... and yes fans have to be switched off! We also feed,... 'bajra' to birds and it's great for kids to grown up with birds and animals, along with trees, outdoors and not too much computer /TV time :))

Indian Home Maker said...

@Aathira lol no!! wrong guess !!! ;))

@Smitha Aww am I so dd that you were so curious !!

@Pinku Wrong guess :)))) Read the next post for answer!

Indian Home Maker said...

@Masood, lol Read the response in the next post.

@G no!!The correct answer is in the next post ;))

@D But she has given no reason to believe she is anything but a honest ... right?

@sahaja .. lol adopted? but by who? Read the answer in the next post!Published ;)

Indian Home Maker said...

@ mammam mia me a mamma -I agree. Completely. It's just not right to blame the mother of a 28 year old.

@Abha 'why take away the credit from her for all the good work she has done till date! there is as much blame you can put on parents for their kids' actions.'
Absolutely agree.Well said!

@Varunavi that was so sweet! She did that? And taking care of small creatures is something I am not able to do much...

@Quirky Indian No :) lol wrong guess!

I read some people are dog-people, some are cat people and some are cat&dogs people. I am surrounded by dog people (including in the family) :D

@Aarti Wrong guess:) take another guess or go to the next post for answer.

Monika said...

thats a lovely post...i know what happened... the little birdie's parents came back and took her

its happened with me before... and all that they wont take because we touched her is just a way to keep children away from harming them so my grandma told me when i was like 12 :) :) :) and that is the time this had happened... i found one baby sparrow in my backyard.. fed her for two days, someone told me not to touch and granny told me the above... i was soft and gentle to her and two days later her mom came and off she went... though i wailed and wailed post that i wanted her back :)

as for menaka i respect her cause a lot but somehow i dont find her too rational

Nita said...

Menaka's son is a trouble maker and he could well be as bad as his father. I believe Sanjay Gandhi used to bully Indira Gandhi too and this is history repeating itself.

Varunavi said...

@IHM the bird was with her most of the time,it died in her hands.My m-law rarly cries and that day she cried for the bird.My m-law just hates to hear anything negative abt the animals in particular to dogs and birds.She doesn't stop gazing the sky in the evening sitting in her balcony.

Gauri Gharpure said...

most amazed seeing the adult sparrows coming and feeding the chick.. sweet!

ur reference to ms. gandhi just brought to my mind this dialogue from little zizou-- 'she was the kinds who loved animals but hates humans'.. i don't know if it is quite applicable, but she is standing by her son like a rock.. and varun's clarification speech the next day was very smug and worded... no sense of apology wht so ever..