Do you remember the first time you went to the grocery store / market of your host country? I remember thinking, "dang, so this is what starvation is going to be like", and resigning myself night after night to pizza deliveries and the ubiquitous Mickey D's. There was a bag of meat in the frozen section of the Perimercados that looked like stew meat of some kind. Upon closer inspection I saw that there was a picture of a golden retriever on the bag. Different other bags had different breeds of dogs like German shepherds and cocker spaniels.
No way....really....I mean...REALLY? Costa Rica does have a large Chinese immigrant population, and dog is enjoyed in several parts of southern China like beef. There was already so much in the store I couldn't read or understand yet that I just chalked it up to diversity and went on my merry way and prayed to God I'd find me some Chef Boyardee.
Twenty minutes and six cans of ravioli and Dino O's later, I was in the checkout lane. In front of me was a European woman who had a much better grasp of the Spanish language than I did, and she was also haggling the price of an enormous frozen bag emblazoned with an elegant picture of some kind of hunting dog in mid-run.
At this point I was struggling to keep all six cans of preservative my laden ambrosia with from falling onto my feet. My mind had completely lost the ability to rationalize using a shopping cart when I first entered the building partly because of my lifestyle and partly because I had assumed they just didn't have the technology. Mostly the first reason. But this lady just wouldn't shut up about her bag of dog, and the line was building to a small crowd. Screaming kids. Cans about to fall. This lady's STILL trying to get a BARGAIN on DOG MEAT! I couldn't take any more....
"Ma'am, there's a Doberman across the street from my house that I will kill, clean, and filet for you for free if you'll just hurry up and get this over with!" My Canadian neighbor, Morton, (who I didn't see enter the store) ran up to the side of the line. "If you touch Kiethy MacTeethy, I swear to God, I'll tell Arnie it was you! You psychotic American jerk! Where do you people get off threatening everything that inconveniences you?"
"My momma didn't name me 'You People', Mort, and I was just trying to offer this lady some livestock AS A JOKE!"
The joke was on me because that wasn't a bag of dog meat. It was a bag of dog food. And it was intended for one Mr. Kiethy MacTeethy as a treat. His owners were a Swedish couple who I can still say that I am friends with now.
Moral: Either don't lose your cool in line, or pick a stray dog the next time you offer to "rustle" one. You pick...