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Lost Cat

by David Yehudah, Bellflower, CA, USA


I was just remembering my first serious love affair with a cat. His name was Mischief, solid black with a few white hairs scattered on his chest. He was long and lean with big, pointy ears.

My ex-wife was a cat person, while I leaned more towards dogs, of which we had several. She was reading the paper one day and found an ad for free kittens. They became the pleading de jour. "Please, Honey. Just one little kitten?" She looked at me with those big, brown eyes, and I was lost.

I waited in the car while she ran in this house to look at the kittens, and in a moment she came out with Mischief, age 8 weeks, and the momma cat, a huge Siamese named Samantha. I've posted a couple of stories about Sam here. It seems the people had several small children, and one little tyke was wagging Sam around like a doll, one arm wrapped around her chest, and the other holding a thumb in her own mouth. Sam had this look of utter terror on her face. So we got both of them.

Mischief grew to be a tall, skinny Greyhound of a cat, sort of like a black cheetah. They were both indoor/outdoor critters, but Mischief stayed right with me at all times, much to my disgust.

One cold winter day when Mischief was about six months old or so, it seems he took the open window on the neighbor's car to be an invitation to sun himself on the rear package shelf.

That evening about an hour after sunset the neighbor's kid showed up at the door. A little 12-year-old mama's little fat boy (he named his puppy "Fluffy." Nuff said.). It seems he and his mama had gone to the store, and along the way Mischief suddenly bolted and started running the Wall of Death around the inside of the car. Mama, being deathly afraid of cats, slammed on the brakes and bailed out, whereupon Mischief darted out and took off. That was about two hours earlier.

It started snowing about then, and the temperature dropped below freezing. Well, I couldn't leave the poor little thing out there to freeze, so I went looking for him. Didn't find him.

About three days later we had just gone to bed when we heard a scratching at the window screen by our bed. There was a doghouse pulled against the wall on that side, and when I looked out the window, there was Mischief standing on the doghouse and frantically clawing at the screen. I threw the window open just as he tore through, and with loud cries of joy he loved all over both of us for a long time, meowing and purring and rubbing against first one then the other of us until we all wound down and went to sleep.

From that day forth he always shared our pillows.

Fast forward a few days. Mischief was being an ornery little cuss, and I made some derogatory remark about cats in general and Mischief inparticular.

My ex looked at me and said, "So says the man who spent two hours walking through the snow at night in a light jacket and calling 'Here, Kitty, Kitty.' Then spent the next two days driving all over town trying to find him. Uh-huh, you're a real cat-hater, you are."


Editor's note:


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