I am sure all of you know that, in China, there was a huge outbreak of rabies in dogs. I read in the newspaper in the United States about dogs being destroyed will-nilly just to make sure that the outbreak was under control. I had never noticed dogs when we were in China last April. But when I read this in the newspapers, I became so aware of dogs everywhere. I was sure that the meat hung out to age in the little community that Ling Ti Lu wandered through was or could have been dog. When I saw an animal being slaughters beside the road as we took the back road to the Pu Dong Airport, I was sure that I saw a brown dog being skinned. It could have been a goat I think but I saw a dog with it’s ears hanging down.
So when the papers began to talk about dog fur showing up on the hoods of coats worn in the United States, I could see the connection between all those dogs slaughtered and the fur on the hoods of my granddaughter’s new coat. In fact every time I saw a fur lined hood while we were in China, I imagined a dog with rabies!!
When we returned to the United State at the beginning of March, I was acutely aware of all the dogs US citizens possess. In the United States we don’t seem to consider any carnivore to be edible (including humans) and the fact that people might eat or make clothing out of a dog seemed unreal and a million miles away. Culture shock is not something that happens after a great deal of time away from the United States. It doesn’t take long for a person to begin thinking and feeling the culture that they are living in.
The fact that I believed what I thought I saw is very strange. I became suspended in an unreal world. I really cannot say for sure that I saw these things. As I have said in earlier blogs, I really do not know. I probably shouldn’t comment on it at all. I live in a world where food is cheap, easy to come by. When I think of how the people in India, for example, might judge my eating habits, I am humbled.
Next blog: My friend wants to adopt a community dog!!!