The New Alpha On the Block

Nov 17th, 2009 | Filed under Interesting, Travel

I am currently staying in a typical South East Asian Suburb, on a long road of small, European inspired concrete townhouses. The road appears quite green, with many small trees and plants lining the narrow little one way street, many of the trees grow fruits such as mangoes, oranges, bananas,  jack fruit,  and others I cant remember the name to. Most nights there is a tropical rain storm and, the road will  fill with frogs, who all seem to enjoy  hopping around happily on the wet pavement. After the roads have dried, many  cats will venture out from the dry  safety of their house gates, and go out to attend to their feline business. Many of the houses also have dogs, who stay within the house gates most of the day, with one exception, a particular dog who roams freely,  named Gong.

Gong

Gong is a fairly large dog, and was the king of the road until at least today. Today something happened, and Gong seemed to have  lost some of his turf.

Now when I say Gong is King of the Road, or as my son and I like to call this large dog, King Gong. It is because absolutely no one that Gong does not approve of is alowed to go down our road.

Our road is fairly busy with a lot of various types of traffic, we have guys on motorbikes who sell twelve different types of soup, there are guys  with full charcoal barbecue driving around, that will serve up five different types of  sausages, squid, or chicken with papaya salad there are guys that cut up fresh  fruits for you, guys with  coffee tea, hot chocolate, iced coffees , there are guys with shaved ice and all sorts of candy and flavorings,  as well as three or so ice cream visits each day. We have the flower sellers that sing with their great voices as they  walk down the road selling flowers that smell fantastic, even from up to twenty or so feet away. Pickup trucks full of organized fruit, vegetables, meat and fish driving down the road twice a day, post  men on their motorbikes, and people installing satellites and Internet connections, servicing air conditioners, or painting houses. There are also lots of residents on the little road, who walk to its end for food each day, or back and forward from school , or the bus, or maybe running to work and back in their motorcycles, cars or SUVs, each day.

Its a long busy road, and Gong is King.

If he doesn’t like you he will bark a few times to tell you to go away, if you don’t go away he will bark louder and all the other dogs will join in. On my road, mostly in the gates, there is a dog about every sixty feet or so. If you continue down the road gong will get off his lazy behind and do his work, barking loud with forty or so other excited dogs joining in. Some are little dogs like chihuahuas, and some are quite large, but Gong is their king.

Most new people just turn tail and leave when Gong decides they aren’t welcome, and steps into their path. I am sure if Gong wasn’t here we would have even more traffic. Thank goodness he lets in all the people he does, all the good food sellers that I love so much and the post man, and of course my son and me.

There is a German writer named Hans that visits family on this street every few months or so, he mentioned to me that he had written a piece about Gong in German travel book, something about how he knew the bad guys from the good guys by the sound of their walk down the road. Yes, tales of this dog have actually been published in print.

Gong is getting old now, he used to control about three square kilometers of turf, besides controlling our entire kilometer long street, he controls the one right of it, as well as across the overpass, and around a street or two there.

The other day I saw Gong going down the overpass, and there was another larger dog following him. It looked completely calm. Gong would stop now and then and bear his teeth to growl as the other dog, but would not attack, he walked about four feet at a time stopping to growl, but the other dog just followed like he didn’t care. All the way back to Gongs house, where Gong went inside and lay down, as the other dog walked past and down the road. Peeing all over Gongs Turf.

A week or so has passed since then, and today all the dogs were going nuts as this dog was again peeing right in front of Gongs house, as well as all the other dogs gates on that part of the road.

It looks like my road may have a new King. Too bad Gong is old, he sure kept us all safe. Maybe Gong will decide to show the other dog why he has lead for so many years, if not, I hope this new dog king is good hearted also.

  1. Athit
    Feb 8th, 2012 at 08:35
    Reply | Quote | #1

    Hi Scott,

    this is truly fascinating! Both you and me wrote about Asia’s most famous Street Dog at almost the same time and I did not know until today!

    Congratulations to your blog! I’m also glad being able to help you with a photo of Gong today.

    Gong got a chapter in my guide book “Bangkok von innen” (= “Bangkok from the inside”) which he really deserved.

    The story is here on the web: http://www.thailandtip.net/tip-zeitung/nachrichten/news/watscheln-oder-schlurfen/

    And some more photos: http://www.forumthailandtip.com/index.php?topic=1504.msg110296#msg110296

    Kind regards and keep up these stories!

    Hans Michael Hensel

  2. PBScott
    Feb 8th, 2012 at 21:43
    Reply | Quote | #2

    @Athit
    Thanks Hans,

    Great to have you visit the site, and read my take on Gong, though I found your version a bit funnier, we both defiantly decided he was King of the road.

    Unfortunately readers, Gong left us all her few months back, he was back being the Alpha in charge until he passed. He normally took the overpass over a six lane road near the house, however this day he did not and was stuck by a car.

    We will miss him.

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