Stand-off

I left the house ten minutes ago to walk to the coffee shop where I access the internet while we’re waiting for the buyram to end so we can get wireless installed in our apartment. At the intersection near the newsstand and the fruit stall cars were stopped and people were standing around looking at something in the street, some of them smoking. Shopkeepers had come out of their shops and stalls and stood, staring at the intersection, arms crossed.
“Oh God,” I thought. “An accident!”
But there was no blood or crunched cars. I stopped near a man half-on and half-off his bike and looked around to see what everyone was looking at- it took a minute to register that there was a dog and a cat having a standoff in the middle of the intersection. The dog- one of the big, fat strays previously mentioned– was standing, wagging his tail at a tiny cat who stood there, statue-still, with her back arched, glaring at him. Another car pulled up and the driver got half out and leaned on his door. The dog woofed. The cat did not so much as blink. The dog advanced, and she backed up, keeping the same distance between them. He circled clockwise, and she pivoted with him, keeping her ferocious face to him. A car drove by them, kissing the opposite sidewalk to avoid them on the narrow street. Neither flinched. The dog woofed again, and again the cat stood her ground, arching her back further.
A car pulled up to the intersection from the opposite side, needing to make a left hand turn, but blocked by the cat. The driver honked. Neither the cat nor the dog twitched. They kept staring at each other, the dog’s tail still wagging. The car honked again. The dog and cat remained oblivious. Finally two shop guys approached to shoo them out of the road. It took two of them, one waving his arms feet from the cat’s nose, to disperse them.

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Filed under Daily Life, Kadikoy, The Picture I Didn't Take

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