I was dreaming when the roaring beast came to rest…
My mother was combing my forehead with her tongue. I felt the familiar weightlessness that mother’s attention caused. When I opened my eyes I expected to see my siblings piled on top of me , indeed, cats were above me but none were familiar. The smell of urine hung in the air. Often used to mark territories or signal fertility, this smell was fear. Oddly, there were no fights probably due to a temporary bond against an unknown enemy.
We had been placed in a small holding pen near a brick wall. Fifteen cats of all sizes and ages were inside the 4’x4′ cage. Anxious purring ran like waves through the crowd. There was one person outside. She talked calmly and her voice was gentle.
Missy crouched beside me. Her trembling had stopped when we were reunited. I hoped she wouldn’t notice mine.
Comfort comes in so many forms. For cats, all that’s “familiar” is necessary for balance. Dogs romp happily, obediently at their owners’ heels but for cats, it’s territory first, human companionship, maybe. So when “gentle voiced” stranger opened the cage, I struck out with anger and such force as to offer an opportunity for Missy, a calico kitten and I to escape. We ran together through screeching tires,screams of anger and ,finally to a quiet refuge in a strange “barn”.
What an odd and terrifying world we had entered. How I wished we were still on the farm.