Yes, that’s what the dog in the picture above has been named. Blue resides in an aesthetically built, open and airy bungalow in Alibag with a huge garden and lot of shrubbery to loll about in. A very likeable dog, mild and sweet, the best words to describe Blue could be ‘garib’ or ‘bechara’, some one who you will like and would empathize with, at first glance.
Blue, as his owner informed me, came in with the laborers into the plot when her house was being built more than 11 years ago and stayed on after they left. Thus, he adopted the house and the owners. Whenever the lady of the house visited Alibag and returned back to Bombay, Blue used to accompany her all the way to her bus stop (enroute to catch the ferry), wait with her patiently till her bus arrived and then return home.
Blue is quite a wanderer. He keeps disappearing, long spells at a time and comes back as if he has just returned from a war zone. Thus, sometimes he comes back with parts of his ear missing, sometimes with wounds and bruises and sometimes with terrible maggot wounds. The local vet then treats him and when he fully recovers, he ventures out again and the same story is repeated.
Last month, I saw Blue after a long time when we had gone to Alibag for a WSD dog adoption. Surprisingly, this time, he didn’t have any bruises or cuts on his body. He bravely lead us (WSD volunteer Rohan who took Blue’s photographs and I) through a short-cut which went through a creek, two villages, people’s compounds, under wired fences, rough trails, fields and of course spells of barking (of neighborhood strays who sighted him treading on their territory) to the beach which was more then a kilometer away.
So why was he named Blue? The stray that used to hang around the house during its construction didn’t have a name till one day when the owners saw a blue colored dog in their midst. Well, not only was the dog blue, so were the caretakers kids. They were amazed when their caretaker told them that after white washing (blue washing!!- The chuna obviously had a blue tint) his hut, he used the leftover chuna on his kids and the dog. (God knows why!) The dog managed to shake-off his blue color and got stuck with the name ‘Blue’.