One of the better aspects of my job is that my clients, who are sometimes interesting people doing interesting things with their lives, tell me charming stories, allowing me to pass them along to you.
This story comes from the frozen wastelands of Siberia.
My client, whom we’ll call Jim, traveled there one spring while working for an oil and gas company. He told me fascinating tales of incredibly resourceful locals he met along the way, including a whole village who built their homes on top of bulldozers left behind after the fall of the USSR.
The villagers, however, weren’t the only clever creatures in the wilderness.
In one village, he was waiting for a ferry to take him and a few other locals across a lake when he noticed a pack of half-starved wild dogs approaching.
He kept a keen eye on the wild dogs and poised to run with the rest of the villagers if the dogs got too close.
The dogs got too close, but none of the villagers ran. To Jim’s surprise, no one even gave the feral pack a sideways glance.
The ferry hit the dock and the gates opened to allow passengers through. No one moved.
Except for the wild dogs. As soon as the gates opened, the dogs ran aboard. Once they were secure, the rest of the passengers followed.
They all rode across the lake together, wild dogs and humans on the same ferry. No one seemed perturbed by this. In fact, everyone acted as though this sort of thing were entirely commonplace, like the dogs rode the ferry back and forth every day.
BECAUSE THEY DID. THE WILD DOGS HAD LEARNED TO USE THE FERRY FOR TRANSPORTATION JUST LIKE PEOPLE. Not only that, but there appeared to be some sort of social contract between the humans and wild dogs that neither party would harm the other.
When the ferry docked across the water, the gates opened again and the dogs ran through, safely on the other side of the lake.