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Happy Holidays, VII

Posted May 25 2010 4:42am
The next day was not a holiday. I was flabbergasted. The streets were buzzing again with the familiar swarm of motorbikes while the automobiles shouldered through in their usual ponderous way, all amidst a morning symphony of honking and screeching. School children of all sizes were in their Wednesday blue, looking like soldiers on parade, oblivious to the errant motorbikes which did their best to run the them over--suddenly a dog eat dog world.

And speaking of dogs, it occurred to me for the first time since the recent cessation of hostilities that even the canine citizens of Bali (which just happen to make up the greater part of the population of the island) had been on holiday as well; for their reappearance in colorful, mangy bundles of three and five brought to mind their absence the day before.

What had these dogs, otherwise evident in the most unmistakable manner, been doing during the recent two day holiday? Had they, like their human counterparts, gone home in packs to their various Kampungs (home towns) to make their observance to the gods as well? How else to explain their sudden disappearance from the alleyways, from the Villa gates, from their concrete beds under the eaves of the shops and the warungs, from the middle of the byway and the middle of the highway?

If the American dog is able to worship its master, is it not also possible that the Indonesian dog may worship an even higher god? Faith, as has often been said, is a simple matter--a product not of the discerning mind but of the open heart--and the dog, apart from all other creatures, including the human creature, is well known for this particular gift. Therefore we shall say, without examining the thing any further, that these packs, these ragged pilgrims, did indeed seek the Mecca of their birthplace, and did indeed depart from the busy streets and fields to worship at the feet of the gods--no doubt salivating and wagging their tails all the way.
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