DAY 70: Corfu continued…mysterious dog sanctuary
The old woman in the black dress.
(continued from previous blog)…
The woman on the other side of the wire fence in the dog sanctuary was stooped so low should could hardly look up. But she just managed and she looked at me suspiciously. The dogs were gathered around her barking in chaotic crescendo. I held the iphone by my thigh careful not to film myself in the crotch and repeated to her ‘I’M TRYING TO BUY A DOG!’
She shoo-ed me away with incomprehension.
I then saw a little white fluffy dog – unusual amongst all the bigger brown short haired dogs – with thick chunks of matted hair hanging of its skinny legs a little like a sheep half shawn . This, on its own, was no huge cruelty – it must have been horrible in the heat for sure – but it made me uncomfortable about the conditions that the other dogs were in.
How many dogs did she have? Well over a hundred I guessed. How did she look after them? How could she exercise them? Apparently she had an equally old sister who I heard was in hospital. THere was no way she could adequately take care of all these dogs. I could see no one else around.
Ripping my clothes off
I started filming the white dog. Then, the old woman, probably in her late eighties, opened the wire door and started spitting at me. I was on public land so I continued. When she saw what I was doing she grabbed my shirt with a gnarled hand and pulled at me, ripping a button off. Normally I’m flattered when women try and tear my clothes off in public but in this instance I wasn’t. I pulled back and started filming her. She came at me and then bent down to pick up a rock. I then walked back to the car figuring it was time to make an exit.
As we drove off I looked my iphone.
‘I don’t believe it!’ I said, slamming my hands on the dashboard.
Being the professional photographer I am I had not pressed record. The last time I saw that happen was with my dad in the backgarden with a new sony camcorder back in 1986. ‘ The red lights not on!!!’
I considered the situation. ‘Although it looked bad in there, so many dogs, so ramshackle,’ I said to my driver and source, ‘I didn’t see any too much obvious suffering, apart from that white dog’
‘You need to find the puppies,’ he said, ‘ they are in a bad way. But it’s true, the place it looks better than it was.But who knows. She seems as crazy as ever. And so many dogs in such a small space. They never get released’
I had my own theories about the old sisters. I suspected they were of that type that thinks love is about hoarding and control. They adore dogs, that’s why they keep so many in such a small space.
I was strangely proud of my ripped shirt. I regarded at it as a little initiation into animal rescuing. But I was also a little uncertain. Could I get in to find out how bad that place really was for sure? Were the stories about this place true any more? Of course I hoped they were not, and that the dogs were doing OK, but I also wanted to see with my own eyes. I was sure there was more lurking behind the fences.
I decided I would come back at night fall.