Still on the stories kick and I’m telling this one today, because, well, it’s going to come up sooner or later.
This is the story of how I met my cat.
Those of you who have heard this one can just skip this and get on with your day. I won’t be hurt.
First, a little background: at the time I was in my senior year of college and living off campus with a friend, whom we’ll call Shiva. (She’s neither male nor Hindi, but it’s a running gag that someday I’ll get around to explaining.) Shiva also had a cat. This cat’s name was Ebi.
Now, Ebi is a Bombay, which means she’s a mix of Siamese and Burmese. For those of you who aren’t cat fanciers, this means she’s forward, talkative, and has more attitude than all of the operatic divas in Wagner’s Ring cycle. She’d talk to people over the phone. She was terrified of cars, but would run to the door every time one passed by, hoping it would be Shiva’s. And, gods help me, I heard about it went Shiva was not home on time. And, according to Ebi, she was never home on time. To add icing to the cake, so to speak, she was still technically a kitten, so she wanted to play all of the time. Since I was the only playmate in the house, she expected me to play with her. I had homework to do and a senior project to work on. So she’d whine and I wouldn’t get any work done and in the end neither of us got what we wanted.
Now that I’ve defined the drama kitty I was living with, this is how I acquired my cat.
Shiva was out of town visiting family and my parents were in town with some of my friends for homecoming. We were walking back from a show at the university theater when this little white and gray kitten walked up to me – me out of a group of nine other people – sat down at my feet, looked up at me with big eyes and huge ears and cute little pink nose and said:
I replied: “Of course I’ll take you home, ’cause I’m a sucker.”
So I adopted a kitten with tapeworm, roundworm, ear-mites, and distemper, but she still turned out to be the best investment I ever made. Shiva took one look at her when she got home and said, “You didn’t adopt a cat; you adopted a community.”
But, once we got her feeling better, she turned out to be the best thing to ever happen to me. She’s my life saver – whenever life gets too tough, whenever I think about ending it all, I think, “My cat would never understand. My family I could explain it to, but the cat would spend the rest of her life waiting for me to walk through my door and never understanding why I didn’t.”
And, the more immediate benefit at the time, was that it finally gave Ebi the Drama Queen someone to play with. Ebi, who it turned out was so desperate for another cat to pal around with that she shared her food bowl, her cat stand, and her toys without objections, finally shut up.