The routine Carport Kitty has trained me for begins with her breakfast every morning. The time varies, depending on when she decides to welcome the new day. She seems to rely on the ridiculous barking of our three dogs who have the advantage of being inside and, therefore, closer to the food source. That hullabaloo usually takes place shortly before 8 o’clock.
When the dogs eat, the barking mercifully stops and I look through the glass window in the kitchen door to check on Carport Kitty who typically exits her heating pad throne in the laundry room, stretches, stretches some more and sits next to her food bowl as if to say, what’s for breakfast today O Fickle Food Provider. Don’t forget the Fancy Feast.
Any change in routine makes me nervous. And I mean any change in routine so when Carport Kitty didn’t make her customary appearance one morning last week, I was wigged. What could have happened? Where could she be?
Oh no, I cried when I went into the laundry room to check on her! (Cleaned up language for cyberspace.)
I picked up four pieces that had been one of Pretty’s heavy wooden rolling pins she kept on the top shelf of the laundry. The pieces were scattered near Carport Kitty’s throne. OMG, I panicked. What if one had hit CK in the head and knocked her senseless?? What if she had wandered into the street, gotten hit by a car and couldn’t make her way home? What if the accident happened during the night before and, again knocked senseless, she became easy pray for a coyote eager to gobble her up?
That coyote thing was over the top, I thought. We had never seen a coyote anywhere in our neighborhood. I had to dial it back before I rushed inside to wake Pretty with the news. Pretty somehow slept through the early morning routine every day, but when a Major Disaster strikes, Pretty is your voice of reason.
She and I made a thorough search of the area around our house and yard, and Pretty tried to calm my nerves by saying Carport Kitty was probably fine. She could miss breakfast but would be back later for her afternoon snack. I wasn’t overly optimistic but tried to look less worried when Pretty left for work a little while later.
Almost immediately my phone rang with Pretty’s special ring. She had spotted Carport Kitty two houses up from us in Neighbor John’s driveway. Neighbor John was the carport she frequented before she came to ours so of course she would go there when the sky was falling in. I was beyond relieved. Bless her heart, I thought. I would have a special snack for her when she got hungry if she somehow managed to come back to us.
I began a vigil to wait for our poor pitiful pussy.
When I was finally rewarded with her joyful return that afternoon at snack time, this was the look she gave me. More disdain than delight.
She didn’t return to the pantry for two days but then cold windy weather hit the sunny South. Carport Kitty was home – and warm.