We are at Manning farmers markets. It is a beautiful Saturday morning, and we have stocked up on fresh vegetables, apples, cucumbers, and orange peppers. While Julie buys a coffee, the kids and I sit under a tree with our bags, enjoying the air and the movement. Because the markets are outside, many people have brought their little dogs, and in front of us two pretty mutts do the usual sniff routine. The lady who owns one of these dogs then moves on, and as she does, her small, furry dog cocks it’s leg and urinates on our eco-friendly canvas shopping bag.
‘Hey!’ I call out. ‘Your dog just peed on my bag!’
‘Ahhh. Sorry’, the lady mutters and continues on her way.
Incensed, I jump up and grab some serviettes from the coffee shop, and mop at the damp sprinkle left by this careless dog and its less-than civic-minded owner. My thoughts coalesce a bit more and I stride after the lady, and interrupt her.
‘Excuse me. But I think if I peed on your bag, you would be upset. When your dog pees on my bag, the least I think you should do is offer to get a tissue and help mop it up.’
The lady looks at me incredulously. ‘Get real! Get over it!’ She is almost, but not quite shouting.
‘That’s not a very mature response’, I return. Snappy, I know.
‘You’re the immature one!’ She does shout this time, and she is now walking away. I give it up and return to Julie, our shopping, the kids and the pee-stained bag. Julie has the coffee. She shares my outrage, as do a few stall holders who witnessed it all. We take our stuff and go and sit elsewhere.
This whole thing rankles. Apart from the illegality of exposing myself in public, how would she feel if I peed on her shopping?
The coffee is soapy and lukewarm. But the apples are delicious.