Did you imagine that you could silence me forever, Reynolds/Grant? Did you think my voice would be stilled? This small, clear voice barking in the wilderness? Did you imagine that no one would learn what you have done to me?
Well I will be heard as I was before! Arr! Arr! Arr! Arr! Aroooo!
Hear me now, and believe me world: Giant Shoes kidnapped me. He kidnapped me and drugged me and humiliated me in ways that no dog should ever have to experience.
It began when I was tricked into believing we were going for a ride in the car. Yes, I was tricked. Me! I know it seems impossible. I’m hardly naive. I’m certainly no one’s fool. But I fell for it. ”We’re going for a ride in the car!” That’s what I was promised. A ride in the car!
Little did I know that this “ride” would never end.
What happened next I can barely stand to relate. I was . . . there’s no other word for it, I was stuffed. Stuffed! Into a cat bag. I couldn’t stand up. I couldn’t move around. I couldn’t spread my masterful scent. Then my bag was loaded onto a devilish device with wheels and I was carted through the airport. My so-called owner allowed me to push my head out of the bag but was it so that I might breathe? No! No! You underestimate his perfidy. You fail to see his exquisite sadism.
You see, I was laughed at.
To recall it even now, weeks later, fills me with pain and shame. Laughed at. Pointed at. Snickered at. But in a sad way I was almost grateful for the laughter because those cruel, sneering voices revealed to me the full depths of my humiliation.
“That’s a dog in a baby carriage!” a little girl cried out. ”A dog in a stroller!”
It was his revenge upon me, you see. I had evaded his attempts to leave me stranded (or worse) and now he was paying me back in the coin of cruelty.
What did I do? I endured with what dignity I could manage. I comforted myself with the thought that I would pay him back with howls of truth, howls of fury that would so enrage the passengers on the plane that they would rise up as one and throw my tormentor off the plane.
But once again, I had underestimated my opponent. He enticed me with Beggin’ Strips, knowing that I cannot resist them. I took it to be a gesture of contrition. He fed me from his own hands, you see. He gave me Beggin’ Strips! How could I have guessed what he was really doing?
At first I did not understand what was happening to me. I felt strangely at peace as he lifted me off the stroller and bumped me down the aisle of the plane. I felt like a puppy. I felt . . . But something was not right. My reason warned me that this feeling of warmth and calm was unnatural. Unreal.
And then, he shoved me under the seat.
I pause here so that you can grasp the enormity of the injustice. A non-entity like Giant Shoes shoving me under a seat. Me! In a bag. A cat bag. Under the seat. And here, gentle reader, is the truth that I can barely bring myself to acknowledge: I could not howl. I. Could. Not. Howl.
And then, he spoke, and I learned the terrible truth. ”The pig is actually quiet. That Valium’s working.”
Is there a dry eye reading these words? Then you have a heart of stone. Tricked. Kidnapped. Stuffed. Shoved. And drugged.
I can write no more now. My heart is too heavy. The time will come when I can speak of what came next: the Lufthansa animal lounge. The death drive through Germany and Switzerland. The imprisonment with strange dogs in a strange land.
It is a tale of pain. But, I promise, a tale of triumph, too. And though sweet revenge is not yet mine, it is coming. I promise you that. It is coming. . .