Thursday, March 30, 2006
We don’t have a dog, of course. But we’ve developed a proprietary affection for this old guy on Jalan Jaksa, a battle-scarred cur of indeterminate age and breeding. We don’t pet him. He’s not that kind of dog. We admire him from afar.
The other night we could hear a dog yapping endlessly from somewhere near the hotel. Even in our fourth-floor room the sound had a piercing quality. “That can’t be our dog,” Chad said. “It sounds like a small one.”
“And our dog is too practical to waste all that energy,” I said. “He wouldn’t raise his head unless someone kicked him.” Which is true. That’s the beauty of our dog: he plunks down right in the middle of the sidewalk and snoozes, oblivious to the foot traffic, the noisy kids, the cars zooming by, and all the other sonic bombardments of Jakarta. Our dog has focus.
Dogs and cats both have it tough here, for sure, but somehow I feel a little worse for the dogs. The street cats look kind of wild, and they’re suspicious of humans. You can’t really imagine them curled up on your couch. The dogs on the street look like normal dogs to me, and it just seems like they should have a home. I guess it’s the only life they know, though. Until they start watching TV, they’ll probably feel okay about themselves.