We nearly ‘lost’ Sheru today and found him after 30 minutes of frantic search. We had some people in the house yesterday to clean the house. It was completely our fault. Being a hot day and so much of cleaning going in the house, we left the front door open completely forgetting that Sheru was roaming freely around. We did not even realize that Sheru was gone until much later. From that time onward for the next 30 minutes, it was panic, running around and shouting for him.
We finally found him with a good-natured lady who gave him water and bread. He was found very far from where we live. We searched all the path and roads we took him for walk but he turned out to be somewhere else. It was obvious that he would be found as dogs tend to come back where they live. The only worry was he does not have traffic sense and we just feared that he might get hurt. We all breathed a sigh of relief when we found him after 30 minutes of search.
When we lost Sheru, many thoughts crossed my mind. Right from him being abducted to getting hurt. That happens to everybody I guess.
Getting lost is an easy thing to do, finding a way back is difficult. I remember the last and the only time I got lost. I was somewhere about 4-6 years old. I did not get a school next to my house so was admitted far away from my home. The mode of transport was obviously the school buses. There were three buses for the school each going into different direction and each bus was known by the number. One day I boarded a bus going in the opposite direction. The reason was if I remember right they changed the number on the bus.
I realized that I boarded a wrong bus in the first stop itself. I got down from the bus and surprisingly the conductor also let me get down inspite of finding no one to pick me up from the stop. I was angry with myself for being so stupid. I somehow knew the route the bus took everyday. I visited all the stops religiously following all the roads I saw from the window of my ride. I did not even realize that I was lost or I did not feel the fear of not finding my way home. I just walked to the direction, I thought was home. I shudder to think what would have happened if I had really lost my way getting back home. I could have walked back to School so that somebody could pick me up but I did not do that. I was not the adventurous kind of child.
My dad panicked when he did not find me on the bus. He boarded the same bus and scolded the driver for not picking me up. Somewhere along the way, I saw my school bus again. They saw me walking back and stopped the bus. I saw my dad in a white pyjama he wore at home getting down from the bus and at that moment I cried for the first time after missing the bus. I still did not know why I cried. Was it a relief of seeing my dad and being safe or was it the fear of getting a scolding from dad for missing my regular bus? I really don’t know. My parents proudly told the story later how I alone came home at that age. I would have felt proud myself but did not for the reason that I actually did not know that I was lost. So why did I cry even for a short time. I don’t know. But that is the last time I was lost.
For years, I would hold my parent’s hand firmly for the fear of getting lost. From my experience, I was not afraid when I was lost. The only thought in my mind was getting home because I knew dad would get angry if I did not reach home on time. But I can imagine how my father would have felt not finding me there. A thousand thoughts must have crossed in his mind. He would have thought about a thousand accidents and incident that could happen to me. Those were the day when telephone was a luxury and that was a good thing. Imagine the panic it would have caused if my father would have called home to inform my mother and the whole neighborhood going into a panic mode.
When I was small, there use to be one program that would be a 5 minutes slot on the television listing the people who had gone missing. The list would be the passport size photo of people right from small children to grown-up men. We as children would always find it amusing to see all those photos. Little did we realize what their families would be feeling? Some of these people would be found and some would never be found and yet their families wait for them to come back.