A couple points to lead with: my Dad had an uncanny way of attracting stray cats. Growing up, I think every one of the cats my parents had, over the years, was a stray…a hungry stray.
Also, yesterday on the 4th of July, was my dear, departed Aunt’s birthday. We headed up to the cemetery with cut flowers from the yard to pay respects to a few fine folks. My Aunt, her husband Felix and my departed Mom’s dear friend, Eleanor.
Of course, these are always, for me, awkward moments. Reflection, prayers, thank you’s, memories, pronouncements aloud of love. But, the day was beautiful and after all it was to in some way acknowledge the birthday of my Aunt, who held that day as particularly special while alive.
We departed in fine spirits and thought we should go by my Aunt’s old house to check on things and water the flowers etc. (this is our other life that I write about over at Hoarding Woes & You). The neighborhood was deadsville, not another soul in sight. We immediately heard a very plaintive meow in the bushes nearby. It was quite similar to the plaintive meow of Penny the Cat 25 months to the day earlier when we found her up a tall tree in brisk winds.
It took some doing for the kitten to trust any approach. Weak, wobbly, gangly legs and truly skin and bones…very weak. Hmmm? Enquiries from a neighbor revealed there had been a litter of kittens scurrying about near the Reed Gulch earlier in the week…an area patrolled by Coyotes, Racoons and roaming dogs. But, none had been recently seen.
Of course, we tentatively touched the cat, held the cat, looked into the eyes. Tentative I say not because of any physical dangers, but rather that emotional bonding that ever so slightly can intrude into the defenses.
Well we thought we have to feed the poor thing. A run to the store for a tin of wet food and evaporated milk and the kitten was ravenously consuming its weight in food. And, it did again back at our home! How did that happen?
Oh my, Emma the Lab, Harley the Multipoo and Penny the Cat were not at all pleased, at first, with this pint sized intruder. After a long night (is it really true my wife used to get up in the middle of the night with two infants to feed them while I faked deep sleep?) there seems to be a bit a truce in the household. Two cats? Are we going to keep this kitten? What would my Dad have done? My dear departed Uncle’s name was Felix. Doesn’t it seem fitting?
Update: A trip to the vet revealed what some on you may already have know…Tortoiseshell colored Calico’s are almost always FEMALES! No Felix the Cat. Reconsideration of names is due.