This is a story, one that can be enjoyed by any age, although, two types of readers will definitely like it. Even though it may read like fiction, most of the story is true and is about one of our cats that is devoted to M. She believes our home is her castle and all her attention is for him alone! She isn’t very fond of me and tolerates my existenence! She has an incredible vocabulary and when she wants something there is little to question what it is. Her eyes are also very expressive and you feel what she thinks. She is “Blackie” and as long as she lives our house will be her empire!.
During the long night, I prowl through the house repeatedly by first looking out the windowed door, then sometimes resting on the stairs or climbing up to the bedroom and stretching out on the corner of the bed or a laying on my chair by the door to the room. Boredom gets to me so instead of yawning I get up and go down the hall and stop at the big scratchboard for a minute before I go back to the glass door. Peering out, I see the moon and beyond the landscape of the yard. It is what lures me; there are fresh odors to sniff as I find them outside, wire fences to climb over and pals to join as they wait for me across the street. Ah, we had such happy plans for tonight. Hopefully, I will be lucky and join the troop.
Last week, one very early morning, Mr. F. came down the stairway, turned on the light in the little bathroom, got the ground coffee out of the pantry and moved to the corner of the kitchen where the coffee pot is. I sat tall on my haunches and coyly tipped my head a bit; looking at him with my big beckoning eyes. I am always thinking up a new technique to have him notice that I want out, I thought, “Put on your sweet look and open your big green eyes wide, tilt your head and he may melt.” It worked, he moved toward me and then his hand grabbed the doorknob while the other hand reached for the door lock. I tip my head back, while touching his leg, to make sure he will turn the knob; he turns the knob and I dash out past him.
As I hurtled across the threshold I suddenly thought, “Slow down, keep a little energy because you have to climb up the link fence if you want to meet everyone. A bit of a pant and I made it to the top of the fence. Now I only need to walk on the rail for a couple of feet and I can jump down and run over to my pals. The three of them are characters, one older than me that loves being grumpy, the second one is my age and picky and the third is so young with so much energy, yet he has a lack of brain power!
At the intersection, it is best to be cautious when crossing the street (the cars race fast in both directions and they wouldn’t mind running over me). I look both ways, take a deep breath and run as fast (or as M would say waddle as fast as I can). Once across I breathe easier and the four of us are together. First, we want to go down 15th street to 13th and make a quick stop at the Alchemist to see if they have some goodies we can snatch at the back door. Then, there’s Valero. Maybe a bit of empanada will be there. Every time my wonderful, compassionate, sweet owner, “M” worries that I am gaining weight and wonders how I gain I say, “Well it’s these little escapades that do me in.” The truth is, fat or thin I enjoy every little treat I find.
Before it gets any later I have to get back to the yard. If I stay out too long Mr. F. will not let me out again. Just before I get to the glass door I start calling out so he knows I am in the yard. He has good ears and can hear me. Yep, I see movement and it’s him. The door opens and quickly I run past him and up the stairway to the corner of the bed. I’ll stay down at the foot of the bed til “M” gets up. The mattress feels so good and I quickly close my eyes.
The ritual for the morning following breakfast is: When “M” heads for the stairway I run before him so I am in his office before he can get there. If he doesn’t head toward the stairway and lingers I must go to the 2nd floor, jump up and sit on the banister and call out loudly until he comes. No matter what, I have him trained and he will come soon enough!!
As M. arrives in his office I quickly jump to the top of his desk. Every once in a while papers fly. It’s more important for me to be on the desktop, centered and sprawled so I have his undivided attention to comb me, rather than have him worrying about any mess I make. The problem is that he needs to keep his desk organized so he can remember what to do. Pity he doesn’t think to ask for my help! I have often used the keyboard at night and am very adept at turning on the computer. After my combing, until later afternoon, is my nap time. I have a few corners of the house I go into so that I am not found nor have my sleep interrupted. If I didn’t sleep then my night prowling would not be as much fun if I were tired.
Each day I believe I should have a treat around three o’clock. The other one that is similar to me (well she is cute, younger but certainly not as smart as me), seems to think she is equal to me and always follows me for our treat. “M” is very slow at getting out the snack, so I prod him a little with a few loud calls. If he doesn’t snap to it then it’s time to do two things: We stare at him, sitting on our haunches and I let out a very tuff call. Gets him to move every time. Usually, there is so little food he gives us for the treat, and because it is a tiny amount I feel the routine must be repeated around five p.m. I hear him questioning why we think we should need a treat in another two hours. The answer is simple, “We deserve it, we are very beautiful to look at and above all if he doesn’t give us a little nibble we have the ability to become quite a bother to him.
It’s that time of day to rest, watch a bit of television, and be ready for another short escapade with my friends. Hey, you want to come along??