Volume 17 - Issue 08
August 2019
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Posted on: Aug 30, 2019

DOGMODOO, WHERE ARE YOU?

Mrs Radhika Brahmanandam

Part 3

 

Anand, a twelve year old school boy, meets his good mood elf Dogmodoo for the first time as he gets ready for school one day. At school he notices how Dogmodoo vanishes in certain situations, along with his good mood and when he returns he brings back his joyful spirit.

He and his younger brother Pramod return home to find their uncle waiting with surprise gifts for them. While Anand loves his new bicycle his joy evaporates on seeing his brother’s smart new helicopter toy. What happens next? Read on to find out.

 

Dogmodoo, where are you?” wondered Anand as he quietly pulled out his bicycle and rolled it onto the street.

He still had his brand-new bicycle – the one he had been begging his parents for, all through the last year. It even had one or two features he hadn’t expected.  But, all his joy and excitement had just evaporated when he saw the brilliant little toy that his younger brother had just got. He would have loved to have that instead; after all, everybody had a bike but that remote controlled helicopter – hmmm! 

Sighing enviously, Anand almost did not notice the old man who was struggling uphill against the evening wind, holding on to his coat with one hand and his cane on the other.

“Hello, Hegde uncle!” Anand called out a greeting to the older man as he pulled up close to him. 

“Hello, Anand!” replied the old man cheerfully. “What a beauty of a bike!” he said, panting a bit, as he paused to take rest.  He ran an appreciative hand over the beautiful contours of the bicycle.  “Just the perfect machine for these roads!” he said.

“Thank you Uncle”, replied Anand.  He watched as the old man wheezed and panted and drew his coat tighter around him.  “Isn’t it a bit cold out here now for you?” 

Mr Hegde looked at Anand, his wise old eyes crinkling into a kind smile.  He liked the friendly young boy who never failed to greet him as he walked past the little gate of his garden. 

 

“Yes indeed it is, Anand!” he replied, as he started to painfully trudge up again.  “It is a struggle to walk against this wind with my poorly old legs.  But I’m out of milk and Cindy and I need it for the evening.  So I just have to go to the store up the hill.  We can’t wait till the milkman brings in the fresh milk in the morning.”  Cindy was the two-year old brown tabby who was the old man’s sole companion.

“But the store is almost a kilometre away, Uncle and it is all uphill!” cried Anand.  “May I bring it for you? I can quickly cycle up there and pick it up.”

“Could you do that for me, dear boy?” asked Mr Hegde, leaning against his cane, with open relief.  “That would be so kind”, he smiled as he handed Anand the money for the milk.

As Anand cycled up the hill, he felt his spirits lift.  The new cycle was an absolute delight and as he pushed harder on the pedals, it sped along like a feather in a breeze.  As the cold evening wind rushed against his hair, Anand felt a little warm nudge on his right hand.  “Dogmodoo, I knew you would be back!” he cried happily.  The little elf gave a huge wink as he held on to the handlebar with both hands, and swung right over it in a happy little circle.

You Have the Power

“God bless you, my boy!” said Mr Hegde happily as Anand handed over the milk carton to him. Cindy the cat rubbed herself gleefully against Anand’s leg.  “See, thanks from Cindy too!” chuckled Mr Hegde. 

“Oh, you are both welcome!” grinned the boy, giving the purring cat a gentle rub on her head.  “Bye, Uncle!  I have to go home now. It is getting a little dark and Dad is particular I should be home before six.”

As Anand cycled back to his house, he found he was humming a little tune under his breath. He had never felt so happy, not even when he had just got the new bike. 

He looked thoughtfully down at Dogmodoo. “Dogmodoo, I was being a little mean when I saw the new toy helicopter which Pramod got from Raju mama, wasn’t I? But then, I could never have brought old Mr Hegde the milk with that toy.  This bicycle is the best gift for me, just as the helicopter is the best gift for Pramod.  How silly I was!  No wonder you left me!”

Dogmodoo pressed his hand warmly. “I guess it is a little silly to stop being happy with what you have just because you think someone else has something better.  I couldn’t stay with you when you were being so unkind to your Raju mama, your brother and even yourself.”

Anand looked down at him, feeling a little ashamed. “Sorry, Dogmodoo!  I will try not to lose you again because of a mean thought.  But then, as always, you came right back… I could feel you even as I rode up the hill. Was it the nice little exercise in the open air that brought you back?”

Dogmodoo looked smilingly up at the pensive young boy. “Yes, and even more so, your kindness in helping the old man.”  Anand blushed at the praise from his little friend, and tried to hide his shyness as he pushed open the little gate to his house.

Dogmodoo, Where Are You?

As Anand snuggled back into his bed, he looked sleepily at Dogmodoo, who sat comfortably on his knees.  What an eventful day it had been!  Meeting Dogmodoo, the Maths homework scare, the disappointment about the cricket team results, the excitement over the new bike… Anand sat up suddenly in his bed, almost throwing Dogmodoo right over the side.

“Dogmodoo, you said I can see you just for today. Are you leaving me then?”  He looked anxiously at his new friend.

“Haha, no Anand! I am not leaving you. I can’t leave you. We belong together, you and I.  Just that from tomorrow, you would not be able to see me.”

“But, Dogmodoo, only by being able to see you today, I was able to understand when I lose my good mood and how I can bring you back too. It was so easy today for me to call ‘Dogmodoo, where are you?’ and get you back.”

“Anand, did I come back when you called ‘Dogmodoo, where are you?’ Think!”

Anand looked up thoughtfully. “I lost you when I was careless or sad or mean, and got you back when I was brave, a good sport and kind… hey, that means I have the power to make sure you are always with me?”

Dogmodoo smiled. “Yes, just like Pramod has the remote control for his helicopter, you too hold the remote control for your good mood. Anand, remember you are naturally good, kind and brave.  When you forget for a bit to be these things, you lose me.  And when you remember to be yourself again, I come running back to you!”

Anand gave a happy smile, as he slid back under the bedcovers and snuggled up happily to Dogmodoo, who slid under the covers with him as well. 

“Thank you Dogmodoo, for allowing me to see you today. I will remember that you are with me always whenever I am being myself.  I will try never to lose you even for a little while.”

Dogmodoo gave his friend a little hug. “Next time, when you lose me would you be calling out ‘Dogmodoo, where are you?’”

Anand shook his head, with a little smile.  “No, Dogmodoo!” he replied seriously.  “I will first get back to being myself – the kind, good and friendly boy I am meant to be.  And then, I will say: ‘Dogmodoo, I am back now and so are you!’”

Bhagawan Sri Sathya Sai Baba says:

“You should never feel dejected. You should enquire the reason for your sorrow. You will yourself realise that your own thoughts are responsible for the present situation. Keep the evil qualities of anger, hatred and jealousy under check. Mend your thoughts and you will be happy again. One need not search for happiness elsewhere. It is always with you and in you. Manifest your innate bliss. Cultivate love that will help you to experience this bliss. Start the day with love, fill the day with love, and end the day with love. Always be happy and cheerful. In fact, your true nature is bliss.”

- Divine Discourse, Jan 14, 2005

Illustrations: Mr Sriram Santhanam

Part 1 | Part 2


Thank you and loving Sai Ram,
Team Radio Sai

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