If you have a dog, you will most likely outlive it; to get a dog is to open yourself to profound joy and, prospectively, to equally profound sadness.
Marjorie Garber, Dog Love
The photo is of the roads that lead into the glorieta near the Mega store and it was taken from the pedestrian overpass that connects the parking lots of Mega and Pollo Feliz (if chickens experience happiness, they are far beyond that stage when they reach Pollo Feliz). I took the photo Wednesday evening just before shopping at Mega.
Two tan-colored dogs were running loose in the Mega parking lot when I arrived there. Both approached quickly, did a quick sniff check and moved on (although one did so using just three legs: it was holding its left rear leg as if it had been injured).
My encounter with the two parking lot ramblers took place after my encounter with the dog that I am going to write about. After wandering the streets that veer from Calle Ignacio Allende, I wended towards Estación. At the juncture of Estación with Guadeloupe and Canal, I crossed the bridge over Stinky Stream (its odors are as I imagine the moats around castles of the Middle Ages must have been, and for the same reasons). It was there I noticed a rather young tan-colored (it was my day for tan-colored canines), slightly skinny dog heading towards me and I wondered if it belonged to the elderly gentlemen sitting on the stone steps in front of Farmacia Santa Julia on the other side of the bridge. I assumed the dog was his and was going to comment to him that he had a nice dog. As the dog and I passed, it turned around and nipped at my capri-length yoga pants.
Startled, I was a little afraid as maybe the dog was diseased or mean or … who knows? I quickened my pace and the dog continued with me, definitely nipping at the capris, first one leg then the other, not enough to tear the fabric but certainly enough to tug my attention. Nearly always slow in new social encounters, I realized, at some point, that the dog and the gentleman were not together and, after we had passed the elderly gentleman I turned around quickly and my foot accidentally hit the dog’s muzzle: just as quickly the dog’s expression turned to one of hurt, and it was only then I realized that the dog was trying to get me to interact; perhaps to play, perhaps to feed it, perhaps to take it home. I felt terrible that I’d struck it, albeit accidentally, but I also don’t want to be responsible for a dog and I now suspected this cutie was definitely looking to score a home.
I continued onto Canal and the dog followed, losing enthusiasm. I turned around twice, each time the dog was further behind and with each turn I felt less and less good about myself. There is a Chinese proverb that when a stray dog follows one home, it is a sign of impending wealth. I think he would have been a splendid pal; I wish I had space in my life for him. The wealth that would have accrued, of course, would have been that of the dog’s company.
I had read of a lost brown dog on the electronic bulletin board and contacted the owner, who had been in distress about losing her dog. She wrote me and said she had looked all over town, but hadn’t found her dog and had given up searching. She mentioned two identifying characteristics for her dog, but I hadn’t noticed them Wednesday evening. I walked that way again the following day and again on Friday, but there was no sign of the dog.
Here’s some typical Eddie Izzard silliness, as always with a large element of truth.