I have always been a good neighbor when it came to my pups. I am proud to say that thanks to a spray bottle of water and their intense dislike to having their face sprayed every time they rudely bark at any noise in the hall, they are much quieter. I keep them in their crates when I have company, especially when I know that my guests are not "dog people". And, most of all, when I walk them, I always have my puppy poop bags to quickly scoop up their "business" as we make our way along the sidewalks and in the parks on our daily constitutionals.
This past Monday the three of us were out at 5:45. It was a lovely morning. Looking down Columbus Street, the Ravenel Bridge was bathed in pink and orange as the sun rose. As we walked up the street, we had to work our way around the Herbie Curbies. Monday is trash pick up day and everyone has their containers out on the sidewalks ready to be emptied by the city trucks that make their way early in the morning.
As I came down Nassau, I slipped one of the poop bags into one of the bins lined up with all the others. The city side walks in the neighbor hood are not wide and when you add the trash containers with the trees planted in the walkways, it is an obstacle course at best. But such it city life.
Fast forward Thursday afternoon. We were making our way back down Nassau from a nice stroll to Wragg Park on Ann Street. From across the way, this older lady shouted at me, "Mam, mam, this is yours." I looked over to see her holding a plastic grocery bag.
"Excuse me, " I said in total confusion.
"You put this in my trash can Monday morning. You know when you were walking your dogs real early. Thought I didn't see, huh?"
I just continued looking at her baffled.
"It's your dog's poo. You put your dog's poo in my trash can. I don't put poo in my trash can. Here it is," she held up the grocery bag. "Come get it and put it in your own trash can, not mind."
I gathered my wits, trying to figure if I had just committed a most offend-able sin or this lady was bat shit crazy. Looking both ways, I crossed the street. Naturally, I apologized profusely and assured her there was no intention on my part to offend her. "With Monday being trash day and the containers being on the street and full, I assumed it was better to dispose of the bag in a proper container knowing it was going to be taken away in a matter of hours."
"I don't put poo in my trash can, " she repeated in a not so friendly tone."I put it this bag for you."
I could see the striped design of my bag through the thin grocery store bag. Now, I was offended. When I took the bag from her, she said, "Now go put that in your own trash."
As I walked off hundreds of thoughts went through my head. - Did she fear that the trash men would judge her, should they find "poo" in her trash? Had I committed an unpardonable sin, placing something in a neighbor's trash can that was already on the curb the morning of trash pick up? Should I have offered her the option of not picking up after my pups and thereby avoiding everyones' trash cans? Given it was Thursday, that meant she had held on to the offending matter for four days. Now that was a woman with a mission. (I wondered if she had not seen me, if she would have kept it past the next Monday. Thinking back on it, yep, she would.