I decided to get out of my room and go to the movies – there was a film festival on through this evening, so I figured I wasn’t wasting much money on a film I would barely understand. And it was a good thing…I understood what was going on, but I probably only caught about half of the dialogue. Oh well.
I’d decided to go alone – probably partly to avoid the awkward, terrible conversation two non-French speakers would have to have to each other on the walk there and back, now that I think about it. Anyway, the film started at 8:50, so by the time I got out it was nearly 11:00. I started to walk home, and got about 5 minutes away from the theatre (if that) when two dogs started following me. They were two well fed labs, one brown and one black. They seemed to have collars on, but I wasn’t about to stop and find out. I kept hoping they were just heading in my same direction. But when I slowed down, they slowed down. When I switched to the other side of the road, they followed.
Some of you may know that I had a bit of a bad experience in East Timor with stray dogs, which I think has colored my view a bit. I have nothing against good ‘ole Spot, as long as he’s with his owner. But random dogs following me? Mmm, not so much. Luckily, these guys weren’t the bearing teeth/growling/barking types. They just trotted along happily beside me. But I admit I was a bit scared at first.
I was hoping I’d be able to duck into the gate at the Institute and leave them outside. But no luck. The caretaker and his dog were out having a smoke (ok, I don’t think the dog was actually smoking…). After a short commotion, Christophe managed to put his dog inside, and come and help me. He called someone – I’m not sure who, maybe the dog police? – to let them know he’d found two dogs with collars and no tags. Do dogs in the US have a code tattooed inside their ears? Apparently they all do here. Strange. I had to stand there with them, as I couldn’t leave or they would follow me! They’d become quite attached in our 20 minutes together, I guess.
Eventually Christophe distracted them long enough that I could go back to my room – by then I was actually warming up to the dogs, but I was starting to freeze standing outside in the cold. I hope Christophe can find their owners.
This was probably one of the strangest things to happen to me recently. I don’t think this would happen in Brighton – instead you’d just have random drunk people following you home (simply because they thought you looked like one of their friends…yeah, they’re odd).