A story of friendship blooming between a human and a beast is no longer new. From time to time such stories are visible on newspaper, magazines, and online news outlet as well. However, it is not everyday that you can read a story of friendship between a man and a penguin!
How did such remarkable and unique friendship happened? It all began during the day that Joao Pereira Da Souza, a 71-year-old fisherman of Rio de Janeiro Brazil, spotted a tiny and frail penguin lying on the rocks of the beach while covered in oil. The penguin does not only look weak, but also seemed to be close to death already.
The kindhearted fisherman knew that he cannot simply walk away from the poor penguin. And so, Joao cleaned the oil off the penguin’s feathers and nursed it back to health. He started taking care of the poor penguin and fed it with fish to replenish the energy it has lost. Soon, he decided to name his newfound friend and call it as Dindim.
Right after Dindim was able to recover, Joao attempted to released the penguin back into the sea. However, Dindim would not leave his side.
“He stayed with me for 11 months and then, just after he changed his coat with new feathers, he disappeared,” The local fisherman recalled with a smile.
If you are thinking that their one-of-a-kind friendship ended there, then you are in for a big surprise! Apparently, Dindim, the poor penguin was so touched by the local fisherman’s kind gesture that he cannot forget about him and considered where he lives as his second home. Hence, each year, Dindim would travel over 5,000 miles just to see and be reunited with Joao, the man who saved his life.
“I love the penguin like it’s my own child and I believe the penguin loves me,” Joao proudly shared with Globo TV. “No one else is allowed to touch him. He pecks them if they do. He lays on my lap, lets me give him showers, allows me to feed him sardines and to pick him up.” Joao explained, expressing how special he seems to be for the penguin he had rescued.
Apparently, the penguin could not forget about the man who saved him that he felt a strong connection with the local fisherman. In fact, for the past four years, Dindim has already spent 8 months of the year with the kindhearted fisherman in his second home.
“Everyone said he wouldn’t return but he has been coming back to visit me for the past four years. He arrives in June and leaves to go home in February and every year he becomes more affectionate as he appears even happier to see me.” Joao admitted, happy to be able to make such admirable connection with the penguin.
According to Professor Krajweski, the one who interviewed local fisherman Joao for Globo TV, Dindim was the first ever penguin which he had encountered to be sweet, thoughtful, and attached to its rescuer. But he has an explanation about such remarkable incident,
“I have never seen anything like this before. I think the penguin believes Joao is part of his family and probably a penguin as well.” The dutiful biologist explained.
“When he sees him he wags his tail like a dog and honks with delight,” The local fisherman said, overjoyed to learn that his presence and attention mean a lot to his newfound friend!
Learn more about the beautiful friendship between a local fisherman, Joao, and Dindim, an adorable penguin who is willing to swim more than 5,000 miles just so he could visit his second home and hug the man who saved his life! Watch the video below and share your thoughts down in the comment section!
Photos and Video | Wall Street Journal and TV Globo