“It was the best of times, it was the worst of times.” So begins the tale of two kitties.
I just had to borrow that famous first line from Charles Dickens’ masterpiece, A Tale of Two Cities, for today’s post. I humbly concede that I’m no great author. I certainly haven’t written any classic works of literature. I write a little bit on a personal blog and somehow manage to keep a few readers and subscribers entertained or interested enough to keep me on their cyber rotations.
But I digress from my tale. Up until last weekend, there were two cats living at my house. And I believed while it was the best of times, it was also going to become the worst.
To explain my rationale for it being the best of times, last month our oldest daughter moved back to our home state [yay!] after a few years living down South. Her plan was to move in with our middle daughter and her roommate in their apartment in the city, but until oldest daughter could arrange to visit the property management company, complete her application, get her name on the lease, and pick up a key, she bunked here with Mom and Dad temporarily.
She literally started her new job the day after she moved here, so between getting acclimated at her place of employment, unpacking a few clothes and necessary items, and driving back and forth to the city, she was swamped. But for Daddio and me, it was great having her here, so that explains the best of times.
When daughter moved in with us for those couple of weeks, her cat was a part of the package deal. That’s where I feared the worst of times would kick in and the tale (or should it be tail?) of two kitties ensued.
Kitty #1 is the domestic dominator of our domain, her domicile. She’s the queen bee, her royal highness. Her name is Callie, the calico cat, and she belongs to hubby and me – or maybe it’s the other way around, we belong to her.
Anyway, I was certain she would view Kitty #2 as the unabashed usurper of her utopia. Kitty #2 is oldest daughter’s huge black male cat who, as king of the hill, naturally ruled the roost at her apartment.
We expected this underling upstart named Jack would upset the reigning royalty, Queen Callie. So we kept them apart to avoid a catty confrontation complete with claws. See, Callie still possesses all of hers and Jack only has back claws. But he is male and huge and quite strong. And I convinced myself and everyone else that the two kitties probably should not meet.
Jack took up residence in our basement and was only allowed upstairs when Callie was outside or in the garage. Every time we let Callie in, we had to make sure Jack wasn’t around. It wasn’t too much of a problem at first, because Jack was skittish being in a new place, so he seemed happy to stay downstairs.
But as he adjusted to us and his temporary home, he wanted to come upstairs more often and was quite verbal about that.
The problem was that three adult people couldn’t seem to keep track of where Callie was at any given moment. Suffice it to say there was a lot of time wasted tracking down cats.
One night, Callie lounged on the kitchen floor. Oldest daughter had been checking on Jack’s food and water downstairs, playing with him a bit, and decided to bring him upstairs.
Uh-oh….prepare for the worst of times. At least that’s what I thought.
Callie looked at Jack as if to say nonchalantly, “Huh. Who are you?” She seemed totally unconcerned that this foreigner was in her territory. And she promptly continued lounging on the kitchen floor totally non-flustered by this new visitor.
Jack, however, was another story. Big, brawny Jack took one look at Callie, hissed, scrambled out of daughter’s arms, and turned into the epitome of a scaredy cat. He hightailed it down the basement stairs. Yep, he ran away. While Callie yawned and went back to sleep.
All my fears about having a cat fight in the middle of my house were unfounded. So all my worries about the tale of two kitties was just much ado about nothing. Jack is king of his own hill again exploring his new abode at that city apartment. And as I write about this in Page 6, in Chapter 10 of my Opportunity book, Callie is curled up at my feet sound asleep on a fleecy Steelers blanket.
Seems like it was just the best of times after all for us here at the empty nest, for Callie and even for Jack, for everyone… except for those Steelers. But that is another story.