She was lost. The old girl had traveled this trail before and it always led back home. But this time she couldn’t find the right smell.
It wasn’t for lack of trying. She kept her nose to the ground for something familiar. But there was nothing.
After all, she wasn’t exactly a young pup. Her nose wasn’t as good as it had been. Long ago, she could sniff a man’s pant leg and know exactly which denomination he was and which party he voted for. But now she was lost.
She followed the smells until she found a highway. Big machines shot across the highway so fast it made her ears hurt.
She lost all sense of smell and sound. This place was not familiar. This was a world she didn’t belong in. This place belonged to the big machines on wheels.
Across the road was what looked like a neighborhood. She could see rooftops through the traffic. The homes looked familiar. Or did they? Maybe that’s the neighborhood
where she lived. She couldn’t remember.
Besides, all she could feel was hunger. She needed food. That’s why she’d left home in the first place. Her owner wasn’t very nice. He would often go days without feeding her, and it had made her skinny. Sometimes, he wouldn’t give her water, so she would drink from ditches.
Early that morning, she crawled beneath the fence and left. She was only looking for food and drink. What she found was a highway.
Big machines rocketed past her. She should’ve turned around and gone toward safety, but hunger made her cross the highway.
She pranced on the pavement, hoping that the big machines would avoid her. One machine sped by so fast it almost lifted her from her feet. Then another. And another. And another.
That’s when it happened.