24 August, 2008

Russian Ice Queen


Did you even wonder why Ice Queens are nearly always portrayed as beautiful ethereal, but majestic figure residing in arctic wonderlands? I usually think of Cate Blanchett, Nicole Kidman, or Tilda Swinton as Ice Queens parading around in their hoity-toity best. That is, I imagined them to be so until last week, when I had a real life encounter with an Ice Queen in Nuremberg Park on a lush summer day.

A friend and I were walking through the park, when we passed an elderly couple and their coiffed poodle. The dog, without any provocation, jumped at me and bit me in my thigh. This incident occurred so quickly, that by the time I realised what the cause of the pain was, the dog was back at its owner’s side. I turned and told the woman her dog had bitten me, ostensibly believing she would offer concern and apology for her dog’s bad behaviour. I couldn’t have been more wrong.

The elderly woman transformed into an Ice Queen. Looking at me with the coldest eyes I have ever seen in a person. She waved her hand in the direction of my leg and dismissed the situation with one sweep of her fingers. Proclaiming in heavily accented German, “Enough. It didn’t happen.”

Her cowed husband momentarily looked as though he sympathised with me, but his wife barked something at him in Russian, and he fearfully turned his head the other way. The three of them continued on their walk through the park. Leaving my friend and I temporarily speechless, frozen in our places, unable to move or react in any way appropriate to the situation.

(P.S. For those of you wondering why we didn’t call the police, you can go and sit on the fence with my husband who shares your puzzlement. For those of you who wish to know the extent of injury: no skin was broken, just two large ugly bruises showed up a few hours after the incident.)


  1. God, how bizarre! And how painful. Sorry to hear about your grim experience, Lia.

  2. I really wonder what I'd have done in that situation. Clearly the owners have a responsibility to ensure their dog isn't attacking people. What if the next person it decides to bite is a child - on the neck? Problem is, you were probably dealing with a psycho whose bite is even worse.

  3. That really is bizarre. I probably wouldn't have gone to the police either. By the time they had gotten there the couple would have been gone anyway.

    Now I know again why I'm afraid of dogs. This really goes beyond the traditionally, "He's only friendly." nonsense.

  4. Here one must call the police because the owner must show proof that the dog has had it's rabies shots. This is such a frightening thing.

  5. Oh what rudeness! So sorry!! I don't think I'd have called the police, either, for what it's worth.