Named after the first dog in space, the Costa Rican Laika (That seems to be how it’s spelled here…I’ve only seen Angela write it one time) was not really a pioneer like her namesake, but I still liked her. I liked her because she apparently had a reputation for attacking and biting men (including one of Angela’s ex-boyfriends), but she always liked me. In fact, she liked all Americans, which Angela’s family thought was interesting. I think it was maybe just the way Americans approached her, though. Costa Ricans generally would freak out to see a big dog like Laika barking and running toward them, but Americans–like my mom, for example–would just say, “Aww, good dog!” in that baby-teasing voice. I personally preferred to say, “Awwww, Laika Loca!” At that remark, Laika’s bark would turn to a sort of purring whine, and you could then pet her. Well, you could pet her if you wanted to. She was pretty incontinent in the years I knew her, and her back half was usually damp and matted down in muddy urine.
In any case, she was a good dog, and the other reason that I liked her is because she had a reputation for killing snakes. I’m sure that there are other dogs than can or could do this, but I’ve not seen them (And if YOU see one, send it my way). Although Laika had not killed a snake in years, it still gave me a bit of comfort to think that she lived in the same town as me.
I’m not too sure about the details of what happened yesterday, but apparently the motorcyclist was taken to the hospital for scratches and bruises, and had even considered trying to get some money from my in-laws to pay for his bike’s damages. Fortunately, it looks like that idea probably won’t pan out, possibly because the guy was surely yet another shitkicker blazing his way to the motocross track in Llano Brenes, the next town just down the road. Seriously, Laika was pretty sick and could hardly move in her last days, and anyone going at a reasonable speed–or even a moderately unreasonable speed–could have easily avoided her. But at least the guy is OK, and he suffered mainly scratches…and a bruised conscience, hopefully.
So, Laika Loca, this email is for you. Say hi to Prisca, Jenny, and Pussypie (if they’ve desegregated dog and cat heavens).
We’ll miss you.