This has not much to do with money or economics. It has something to do with vocation, and quite a lot to do with the common good.
The first thing I remember are a lot of other big dogs. They used to push me around and bite me. When the People put out food they used to eat all the food. They fought each other. I was too small to fight. I used to run around on the gravel and bark at the other dogs. Sometimes the People hit me with something they called a Broom. They called me “Dog.”
One day the People tried to catch me and get me to fight. They got out the Broom and I ran into the bushes. I dug a big hole in the ground under the bushes. When I came out I couldn’t see the other dogs or the People. There was a long path made out of dirt. I followed it, and there was an even bigger path made out of something hard and dark like gravel. I started to follow it, but huge machines came screaming by.
I drank water out of puddles and ate what I could find and walked along the side of the big dark path. Then I saw some new People I had not seen before. They had brown clothes on and hats. One of them said to another “Oh, here is the stray dog that got reported.”
They picked me up and put me in a big box made out of iron. I didn’t like it very much. But they also gave me some food that tasted so good, and a nice silver bowl of water. They put the box in one of the big machines. It jolted around for a while, and then they took me inside a little white building.
There were other dogs there in iron boxes. I didn’t like them very much and I barked at them, but they couldn’t get out and they didn’t eat my food. The People in brown gave me food and water every day in nice bowls and took me outside to go to the bathroom and spoke kindly to me and didn’t hit me with a Broom, but they didn’t let me run around. They put something around my neck they called a collar and fastened some rope to it they called a leash when they took me outside. One day they put something into my leg that hurt a little. They called me “Louise.”
Sometimes other People would come and look at all the dogs and take one away with them. One day some People came and looked at me. There was a grownup Man and a Big Girl and a Little Girl. They put a leash on my collar and put me in another iron box with a blanket on the bottom and put me in a big machine. It jolted around for a little and then it came to a big white house.
I was afraid there might be other dogs so I didn’t go inside. I pulled and pulled on the leash. Finally the Man carried me inside. There weren’t any other dogs. There was a water bowl and a food bowl and a big fluffy pillow they called the “dog bed.” I sat on it and no one made me get off.
I was still afraid there might be other dogs so when they opened the door I ran outside. The Little Girl and a Woman came and tried to get me back in. Finally the Big Girl picked me up and carried me. That night I sat at the door all night and howled because I was so confused.
But then every day started to be the same and not as frightening. They gave me food in my bowl three times a day they called “kibbles.” I was always afraid another dog might come get it, but I never saw one. The Man took me on a long walk every day along paths and in forests and down to a stream. Sometimes he took me on a shorter walk too where there were houses and large machines. I still didn’t like the machines much. Other than that I could sleep on my bed or walk around the house and nobody bothered me. They gave me a bone you could chew and chew on and it never chewed up, and a teddy bear. The Big Girl and the Little Girl liked to pat me and play with me. The Woman gave me my kibbles. Sometimes they all left their shoes out and I took them to my bed and played with them. Sometimes they all gave me treats. The Little Girl gave me treats the most.
Once they put me in their machine and took me to a place where a nice Woman in a white coat put me on a little bed and I fell asleep. When I woke up everything hurt and there was a cone around my head. I didn’t get to go for walks when I got home. I was very unhappy and I chewed on the windowsills. After a while it stopped hurting. They took me back and I fell asleep again. When I woke up the cone was gone.
Sometimes I got in the machine and we drove for a long time and then we got out at a big brown house. There was a very big white dog there. He didn’t try to eat my food. There was a field behind the house and there were cows. I ran around with the white dog and the cows. There was a Man and a Woman there. They petted me and said nice things. Then we went home. Sometimes the Man and the Woman from the brown house came to my white house and petted me and gave me treats, but they didn’t bring the white dog.
Another time I got in the machine with my Man from my house and we went in the forest and tried to climb a mountain. It was hard to get up and I found a little cave and I went inside. It was nice and soft and there were leaves. The Man kept trying to get me to come out. Then he went away. He was gone all night, and it was cold and rainy. In the morning he came back with the Big Girl and the Little Girl and the Man from the brown house. The Man from the brown house climbed up and put me on his lap and slid down the hill. Everybody cheered and petted me.
Now I live in the white house with my Man and my Woman and my Big Girl and my Little Girl and I take my morning walk and I eat my kibbles and they pet me. The end.
Photo by Jennifer Woodruff Tait