Friday, July 1, 2011

Was it a dream? A photograph of you and I.

It was a long time ago that there was one fine summer evening, about fifteen years back.  I and my brother were playing cricket on the terrace. We played 10-10 wicket matches, and I seldom got a chance to play as India, I am the younger one. And I preferred Australia as a result. So it was this fine summer evening that we were still fighting over a petty LBW. No matter who was bowling, my brother was the first, second and the third umpire along with the whole Indian Cricket team, and the commentators too. I liked to bat more and bowl less, though on that field, the situation was always the opposite. I always had to bowl more and bat less, rather fight for the bat. So we were fighting as usual when my father came on his scooter and parked it on the terrace near the solar geyser, the place where it had always been parked. But that day, he had a little wooden apple crate with him, placed carefully in between his legs, where otherwise one of us would get to stand while going to school. That apple crate did not have any apples, but rags of cloth and a little woolen ball coiled up inside in once corner of that little box. It looked like a tiny cat. It was a 15 days born orphan leopard cub whose mother and other new born brothers had died. It was a survivor, it had to be. Such an evening never happened again.

I was quite young that time, and I don’t much remember what time I got to spend with him, but one thing is for sure, he had a room all for himself, and a little house in that room too, though it seems strange to have a house in a room, but it was this way for him. We still slept with parents. And he was fed with milk in a bottle, like babies, while we had started to drink in glasses. There isn’t much to my memory except for a few incidents which I think I would not forget, nor elaborate. 
He grew quickly in size and had to be sent to a place where he’d be taken better care of, for a vegetarian house could not feed his growing appetite of meat for long, and that too cooked. So it was this last day he spent interacting with the world on camera, much, much more shyly than his natural self, except for a few instants with his companion. He loved kids, liked to play, only that other kids would start crying the moment they saw him approach (In the video he makes a run once, towards a kid and his parents, not in the camera). You’ve all seen human babies cry for milk, probably puppies too, I’ve seen a leopard cry for milk and hold the bottle like any human baby would and I find it adorable.

It was after two years the later part of this video was taken, and he remembered us, even after a long long time.

And there is one thing, that he could teach anybody, speaking for a very diverse family, the wild life.
They are not humans, they remember things, relations, families, loyalty and love, and give it back no matter how much time passes in between. They are not hypocrites. They, are our true brothers, under the sun.

P.S. The video is the result of a one day fiddling with Adobe Premiere and Encore on the video extracted from a dying Video Cassette, and I know if I had given it more time it could have been better. Maybe I’ll work on it in a while and share, but at present, it’s not the video, but the voice of dying animal life that we should be concerned about.


maithili said...

I so so envy this experience of yours! I read a prose once in school and your story is exactly the same except that leopard was found during a hunt in that story.. I remembered crying through the text at the way the adorable leopard grows up and has to be separated from the family and it dies in the sanctuary.. yours post brought back memories and again got me drooling over this animal..

P.S I coudn't see the video.. some problem with it.. :(

Sameera said...

WOW!!! Anshul, you did not disclosed its name.. Must have named something.. Hai na??

You ve seen a leopord growing just like any other pet. Lucky you. The cub in the video looks lovely, though a little shaitaan..

BTW.. where's it now? Would love to know more about it.

Rachit said...

Yeah, the animals don't have conditions attached tag with their love as is the case with we humans.

And I love those 10 player match where a person plays for 10 batsmen. Those were the best days of my life.

Weakest Link :)

Mishilicious Mishi said...

I loved it
I loved it
I loved it..

You are so lucky seriously! it reminded me of "Christian the Lion" is proved again that animal are more loyal then humans...the video is awesome...its beautiful...You are so lucky to show this to your kids one day:-)

he is cute so friendly...i loved the way he snatched that milk bottle...So you guys gave him away to some zoo? how is he doing now? do you still go to see him? dont you have most recent photo ? plz do post if you do..

I wish we could do more to save these precious animals...he is adorable! being a pet person...I am crazy about animals..I have a cat that em madly in love with...I'm sying this on the base of personal it cat or dog,or sparrow or parrots..or toto..they are more loyal in returning the love then humans...

Awesome post..keep it up:-)

AS said...


lucky u!

the leopard looks very cute and that doggy as well. love can tame wild beasts as well :)

Subhrashis Adhikari said...

they aren't human...good that they aren't...That one species called human has already proven so deadly...time to think about our true brothers, under the sun...
what an experience you had...

Loved the post...

Rià said...

lucky u to have experienced something like this. :) Loved the video.

Red Handed said...

Pet Leopard!!!! Nd it seems so adorable!

These wildcats have no human feeling and emotions than us..atleast when it comes to love. Pure and innocent.

I loved reading this and for some reason it made me nostalgic to the highest degree.have no human feeling and emotions than us..atleast when it comes to love. Pure and innocent.

I loved reading this and for some reason it made me nostalgic to the highest degree.

Prateek Bagri said...

Your elder brother is so like me. :p

Yes, leopard is appearing to be adorable.
Perhaps I should ask dad to get me one. :D

Mishilicious Mishi said...

I have just watched the video for the third time:-)
hey you din mention his pet name?

Cindrella said...

Wow!! That's so good to have had your precious moments with a little cub!! Wow!!!

tarunima said...

the baby leopard is so so adorable,naughty,lovable:)
You are really lucky to see this beauty so close..and i totally agree with you, animals are compassionate and they value love unlike humans.

Blasphemous Aesthete said...

Have you read the short story named "The Leopard" by Ruskin Bond. Do.
Thank You :)

He's now in heaven. They don't live long lives like we do.

Yes, they were fine days indeed.


Raja. :)
He's the king of Himalayan Jungles,a leopard that is. :)



Thank You.

Yes, I am. :)

@Red Handed
Just don't cry, it's starting to rain here :D

Try if you can.

:) Thank You again.


yes, they are beautiful.

Aashayein said...

Leopard as a pet?? :-P oh gawd...but i luvd it...specially the last few lines...yes they r nt humans...n so they know and value relations more!

Sadiya Merchant said...

hawwww! a leopard fr a pettt!!!!
nw dats sumthin i cnt imagine!
bt hw did ur dad find it? n evryone was cool wid havin a baby leopard at home???
*think think thinkkk*
jo bhi ho- nice!
n haa if u wer a grl na, all those problems wid fightin to get to bat wud hav nevr happend.
n nobody wud hav askd u to field eider cos grls r miserabl at it. evryone knos dat! :o

Bhargav Bhatt said...

awesome.... true humanity... thanks to you and all for that very very very human approch,,, we still exist jz coz of such deeds...

Eon Heath said...

Hey, Buddy
true one thing that u said..
they are more humans than us...we forget, we hold grudges..they love with purity in their heart...


Suruchi said...

We started with cricket and ended with much more adventure-you an your stories have such a Ruskin Bond-ish feel to them...which means super nice, just in case you don't like Ruskin Bond!:-)

And you must be the coolest kid on the block having such an amazing pet. The best thing about this blog domain is that we get such a variety of dishes served in such a mouthwatering way, that gulping down for ultimate satiation is the only way out!

Wish the versatility never ends:-)

Komal Ali said...

Oh my God. It is so kind of your family to have given the cub shelter. May God bless you all. :-)

The video left me in awe.
And you're right about, 'They are not humans, they remember things, relations, families, loyalty and love, and give it back no matter how much time passes in between. They are not hypocrites. They, are our true brothers, under the sun.'

R said...


thats the word for it!

following your blog now, hope that is ok.

Blasphemous Aesthete said...

Appreciated. :)

That's a long story to narrate, but yeah, we were more than happy to have him with us. :)
And we do have a women's national cricket team, and they aren't bad. SO there is always scope, for you too :D

Don't thank anybody on his part, he was family, do what you got to do for them.

Yes, thank you.

How can I not like Ruskin Bond? He was brought up in these hills and these hills come alive in his creations too. His schooling was in a school in Shimla :)
Yepp, everyone was curious and once the entire school came on picnic to my home to see Raja.
I too wish I can be versatile.

We are blessed :)

@Raam Pyari jee
Did you need to ask? Who am I?

mk said...

great...I always wanted to hold a wild cat in hands..or even observe it so close were lucky..

moments spent with wild animals...even the pets too..make one more closer to nature..and to realize its value too...nice narrative!!

Unknown said...

wow that must have been a really great experience of yours Anshul. I totally second the last few lines which you have written about animals returning love always. :)

The Leopard happens to be my favorite animal since I was a kid. No reason why though.

maithili said...

I think that is the same story i m talking about! The leopard called Timothy :) I jst loved that story.. even my blog has a leopard called Timothy :0

Alka Gurha said...

Wow, leopard as a pet....unimaginable.. I know Dhoni has adopted one but in a zoo.

Such a different post and interesting too... loved the video. Saw it twice.

Blasphemous Aesthete said...

Yes, and hope you get your chances too.
Thank you.

I understand, they are beautiful beasts of the wilderness.

umm no, the one I am talking about did not have a name. I'll have to search more.

Thank You Ma'm :)

AnicA said...

what a story.... what a video... what an experience.... and wht a message !
it was heart warming in all the senses . kudos!

Suruchi said... like Ruskin Bond quote the best of lines from write like versatility personified(you know how bloody many times I got stuck on the stupid spelling of Versatility, and yet the stubborn me didn't give up-there was no other word for you) are are you have a younger brother-keeping you in reserve for Seeya would be too long a call, na?;-)

Tanishka said...

OMG... It would have been soooo much fun.... I really am J now..... My dad too had a scooter, he too used to get wooden apple crates, in fact he still gets them but unfortunately they always have apples in them and not something as exciting as this... :)

Tweety said...

awwww it was so cuteeee almost made me cry...i loved it...but tell me wasn't it scary??? but the little cub was sooo sweet...

Someone is Special said...

leopard as a pet?? You are a lucky guy then... Sweet Memories.. and I do agree Leopards are also like dogs when real love is shown to them.. SmileS.. I watched the video and it was aww..

Someone is Special

Blasphemous Aesthete said...


erm, no :P

:) Never mind, you can always have a little cat.

No, it wasn't scary at all, it was plain cute.

If it were up to me, I'd rather not say that leopards are like dogs when real love is shown to them. Every one is special, not just someone.

Purba said...

You had a leopard for a pet who ate from a karhai! Now how many of us can boast of such a past:)

Minal said...

A leopard ? - amazing!

Fatima said...

Wow..leopard as a pet...that's amazing! Its soo cutie and the moments you spend with him must have been so special...really lucky to have had a leopard as a pet and the touching thing was this post was the end coz yes they do recognize us and our more faithful than humans ! :)

Take Care.

Monika said...

Oh my god, incredible. Leopard and a pet, i still cant believe. Sure, animals have a different and more faithful sense towards us and you just presented a beautiful instance.
Amazing, no other word came up!

Angel said...

having and loving such kind of animal , for me reflects you..! Regards.

Blasphemous Aesthete said...

And drank milk from a baby bottle :D
Not many :)


Yes, thank you.

Thank You :)

I wish :)

Chandana said...

WOW! This is amazing! You were a wild child when growing up eh? :) It must have been a great experience for you! The video is simply amazing!

There is a similar story by Martin Spice called 'Lynx'.Its the true story of a lynx cub rescued by a boy Tashi and then it goes into the hands of another boy Will and finally they all meet!

Tanvi said...

The video needs a bit of improvement... but the main issue in question is nice :) Wild life, we should do something for their habitat... : ):) Nice post Anshul... From mythology to wild life..writing on a host of new topics :) :)


GvSparx- Inspiring Life said...

Blasphemous Aesthete... the name you'll always find in the comment area of every
Excellent work !!
After seeing this I say to myself i would never like to have a pet :(

Unknown said...

Now that is some experience... I couldn't see the video, but I can picture the beautiful being in my mind...

Anita Jeyan said...

Now thats quite an experience...doesnt happen to everyone ...U should be on TV !!!! Such a nice video !

Carnett Rose said...

I'm reiterating the same expression as everyone when I say that you have been lucky enough to have a leopard as a pet, even for a short duration.

Obviously, a lifetime of petting stray cats doesn't count. ;)

Blasphemous Aesthete said...

Thankfully, I wasn't notorious :D I'll search for that story, but knowing that I am lazy, shouldn't you try to do a little more than just suggesting? :P Just kidding, I'll find it.

A bit of? Are you kidding me, it needs a lot lot and lot of improvement, and the writing too. :)

Great, if seeing this video makes you so unenthusiastic about having pets, I'd rather say there are many videos on the internet which would make you drop the idea of making babies too? Ain't it. Only if you'd specify reasons.

Yes, that was some experience.

No, TV doesn't like me, I have shunned it for a long time now. :)

It just might, they say cats have nine lives :)

Beyond Horizon said...

They are not humans, they remember things...How True!

Hmm...I can't say anything other than Thank you for sharing with all your lovely moments with him :)

CookieCrumbsInc. said...

Comments have been so.. umm... comprehensive that it has left me with nothing to say:)

It's a pleasure knowing there are other people who would share their home so willingly with animals. I wish you could have kept him:|

Where is he now?

SEPO said...

wow this is too awesome. The last lines are so very true!

Video was a perfect touch.

had i been u, I would have been petrified!!

Lilangel said...

Awesome and beautiful post ! :) You surpass yourself with each post attaboy :)

Ph_ said...

Oh my God!
And when my brother asked to tame and raise a baby cub he got scolded enough to have that thought out of his head! lol
Lucky you =D
Very nice read.

Anonymous said...

Hi. Truly magnificent! I have a thing for animals too, but haven't had any as a part of my life as yet. Thanks, for I had a lovely time reading and watching the video. Thank you for sharing:)

Sara said...

i LOVED the post.

Pri said...

awesome video!!
i loved the way you put this post together :)

Blasphemous Aesthete said...

As I said to someone else too, don't thank me, it was a pleasant time having him with us.

Firstly, welcome here.

And, he's now with his maker. Died quite a few years back.

:) If you have had him, you wouldn't have been petrified. he was cute.

Is it? Thank You :)

There was a time when we had to return him back to the zoo because of a law on wildlife protection.

Start with a dog. And educate him like a man :P :D Not really, but do consider the first suggestion.

Thank You :D

Thank You doc :)

Jyoti Mishra said...

Very aptly presented... Wildlife is in dire state and we should make sure that these creatures are well conserved and helped. Otherwise we'll watch them in such VIDEOS only.

Show this to them who are just blindly cutting forests without thinking about the natural habitat of wild animals.

For video: I am speechless. I watched it wide-eyed. Full of love, and you are so fortunate to have such an experience.

I missed reading your posts. Its great to be back !!

Anonymous said...

Thanks for the wishes. Considering that am currently extremely scared by all the changes that are happening to my mind and body- I think I need a lot of them to survive this phase :)

zephyr said...

What a great video! And how lucky to have a leopard cub as a pet. But is it ok to have wild animals as pets? I thought one had to hand them over to the zoo?

Tripthi Battapadi said...

This was awesome. :') I feel like I have gained a lot of knowlegde & understanding after reading this post.
Thank you.

Anonymous said...


Its so cute.

Blasphemous Aesthete said...

Welcome back :)


You have to, true. It's the wildlife protection Act. The later part of that video was from the zoo itself.

@The Blue Periwinkle
I am grateful :)


Anonymous said...

Oh really? ;) I'll take that suggestion my friend :)

Someone is Special said...

of course everyone is special..

Someone is Special

Priya said...

That is officially the most adorable thing ever! Your story reminded me of when my dad used to tell me that all animals are as scary as we make them seem.
You're right - if there is one thing that we should learn from animals, all animals - it's unconditional love! Nice post :)

Komal said...

This was such a beautiful post which as left me speechless. I love animals, but more from the same group to which the tiger belongs, is cat.

I have had many of them, sometimes even the stray ones just cause they are like more loyal to me than any other animal. And when you said, they are NOT hypocrites, it was like a wonder statement. Cause THEY ARE NOT HYPOCRITES no matter which animal it is.

Love with an animal is another way of loving humankind, just here it becomes living-kind. :)

The way you write is inspirational.

KP said...

Wow..! amazing.. ur pet, the description and the video (though i couldnt wathc it fully) I envy you.. though I had as pet, some really smaller species of the cat family.. :)

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