This is a downer post. But I just had to write it out of me.
I got off the subway two stops early on my way home tonight with the intention to walk off my dinner drunk (bottle of Proseco, check!). Said stop is in an uber populated hipster nightlife area buzzing (like myself) with much bar-hopping foot traffic at any given hour. I emerged from underground, hit our 90-degree humidity like a brick wall and ran smack into a scene.
First I noticed the panting dog sprawled on the sidewalk. A plastic bowl full of change, not water, by her head.
Second I noticed the puppies, barely born, shuffling on their bellies, searching for milk.
Third I noticed the three policemen, 2 in uniform, 1 in civvies. I only noticed them because two misguided puppies were trying desperately to nurse their shoes.
Fourth I noticed the tipsy [questionably] homeless guy nervously smoking a cigarette and digging in his pocket for a wallet.
I did not gawk on my newfound scene alone. Everyone who exited the station with me stopped dead in their tracks, trying to figure out what the f*ck was going on… certainly not what it looked like…. a homeless man, trying to procure cash out of us by using his prostrate mommy dog + brand new puppies as bait. And getting in trouble for it.
Which is exactly what was going on.
Suddenly sober, I couldn’t take my eyes off of the puppies. Tears were wallowing. What could I do? Other upstanding city folk were stalking the policemen, questioning them and making sure they were doing the “right thing.” But I was frozen. I watched as the homeless guy nervously chatted on his cell phone (technology must come cheap), while he pulled each puppy off a nipple and shoved them into a crate one at a time. I watched as he took his ID back from the cops and shook their hands. I watched as he physically pulled the mommy dog and her dangling breasts up to a standing position with the leash. I heard the squeaks of hunger from the crate. I watched as they all walked away. Guess he wasn’t getting in trouble after all.
I have no punny closing. It just made me sad. I hope the mommy dog, wherever she was headed, got to drink some water tonight. And I hope the puppies don’t suffer too much on their way into, or out of, life.
I will wake up tomorrow and think of them. But I doubt I will think of them much past that.