Sometimes it really rains cats

Published 11:58 pm Tuesday, September 23, 2008

A flash of white caught my attention as I sat sipping my first cup of coffee. Something moved in a tree outside the kitchen window and I squinted in an attempt to bring it into focus.

“What is that in the tree?” I said to my husband who was getting ready for work. “If it’s a bird, it’s a big one.”

I set my coffee cup down and walked to the sliding glass door to get a better look. Just then the white blur turned to reveal a face.

“It’s a cat,” I said as I slid the door open and headed down the steps. “Oh, it is a kitten.”

From its perch, a ball of cream-colored fur cried down at me seeming to beg for help.

“It’s alright,” I said as it moved out on a limb. “Be careful; I’ll help you.”

I tried to gently coax it down and it was coming my way when the two dogs ran up curious to see what was so interesting in the tree.

“No,” I cried. “You are not going to scare this kitty.”

They both looked at me, wagging their tails in response. The cat cried again and inched back toward the trunk of the tree.

“I’ll be right back,” I said to the scared creature. “Let me get a ladder and I’ll help you.”

Back inside I explained the situation to my husband as I carried a short step ladder toward the door.

“You are going to hurt your back if you aren’t careful,” he said. “What are you going to do?”

I quickly considered the possibility of a back injury, but I was in rescue mode.

“I won’t hurt my back; I’ll be careful,” I said. “I’m going to try to help it down.”

Back outside I heard the cat crying in earnest now, but it was no longer in the tree. Because I am deaf in one ear, I cannot tell the direction from which a sound comes. That left me standing in the yard trying to figure the cat’s location.

“I can’t tell where it is,” I told my husband who was on the deck about to leave for work. “Can you tell where the cries are coming from?”

He pointed almost directly under his feet.

“About here,” he said. “It’s under the deck.”

I grabbed a flashlight and knelt down beside the steps. There it was standing about mid way meowing for all it was worth.

“Come here baby,” I said in my best non-threatening, cat-loving voice. “I won’t hurt you. I won’t let the dogs hurt you either.”

It crept up to the hand I’d managed to slide through the lattice and laid its head in my palm. A few more words and it slipped out and into my arms.

I brought it inside, fed it an egg and then some cat food my sweet neighbor shared with me.

“I don’t need a cat,” I said to myself. “I especially don’t need an inside cat, but I can’t put it out because the dogs will surely chase it.”

All of this I whispered as it curled itself into a purring ball in my lap.

As I stroked its head I thought about the events of the morning. Rescuing a cat was the farthest thing from my mind when my eyes opened on this day.

“Well,” I thought,” shows you that you never know what life has in store.”

I don’t know where this cat came from, but I have a theory. Maybe my theory is right or maybe the universe simply rained a cat into my morning so I would stop and appreciate the wonder of creation in animal form.

However or why ever it arrived, at this moment that baby cat is sleeping peacefully on my couch and there is a good chance I’ve moved from rescue mode to adoption plan.