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Thunder and Dogs


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We heard thunder for the first time in a long time today. It gave the usual thrill. Reminded me of when we were in Camiguin, caught out in that rainstorm when we went to get dessert. We walked back on the beach with no flashlights, our way lit only by periodic flashes of pink lightning, and Chris so scared he wouldn't speak. I thought it was beautiful. At every strike I paused to look, but not for very long, driven on by his seemingly furious fear. Lucky for him that his fear becomes a quiet fierceness. Mine is all panic and gasps, tiny screams. Like today, when we encountered the barking, growling dogs on the narrow trail, and all I could imagine was them lunging and sinking their teeth into our arms and legs. Chris snapped at me to stop looking so scared--my body was the very picture of arrested flight--but of course I couldn't and was only made more nervous by his admonishments. It is always this way with me and the dogs of Latin America. I am 5 times their size, but I know and they know it wouldn't take much to defeat me. Well, if Chris can be afraid of lightning, can't I be afraid of dogs? Four people died in Mexico City recently from maulings by stray dogs. I never thought to be afraid of a dog until our travels (except for when I read Mo Yan's Red Sorghum). It could just be bias, but I think my fear is more reasonable than his (though perhaps more counterproductive as well--unless lightning, too, can scent fear). I haven't thought of a solution yet. Maybe a stick. Or some bread?

Posted by chschen 16:00 Archived in Colombia

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