Wednesday, October 14, 2009
I was not really in the market for a cat. I think of myself as a dog person. In 1999, my sweet black lab Stella was 15 years old and she wasn’t getting around as well as she used to. I was working long hours and I wanted her to have some companionship when I wasn’t home. I know she was usually sleeping all day while I was gone but I couldn’t help thinking that keeping the TV turned on to the Food Network just wasn’t enough company for her. I decided she needed a friend.
My friend Jennifer and I went to adoption day at a local pet store. A rescue group brought in cats they got from the pound and fostered them until they could find them permanent homes. Not knowing how a grown cat would react to a 75 pound canine roommate, I decided that a kitten might go into the deal with less dog hating baggage. Enter, Pearl.
The rescue group had only one kitten there. She was an all black, feral little number. $40.00 and a car loan’s worth of paperwork later, she was in a cardboard carrier on the way home with me to meet her new best friend and start her new life.
Pearl and Stella became fast friends. They slept together on Stella’s pillow and Stella gave her big sloppy tongue baths. Pearl took a little longer to warm up to me. Now, 10 years later, she is still warming up to me. I get it. She’s a dog person.
When Stella died a year later, Pearl and I both woke up the next morning with our first patch of gray hairs. We were mourning our friend. Our friend had left me, the dog person, with her cat. I adore her cat.