Thursday, August 19, 2010

The best time waster.

I am surprised I didn't see it before!  The best thing I ever did to waste time well was get a cat.  My cat, Le Pusse, is a master time waster!  She could have a PhD in wasting time.  I have learned great things from her.

For those of you who don't know, we got Le Pusse as a test run cat.  The kitty ophanarium, i.e. Save A Dog Scheme (SADS), is chock a block full of cats that have been surrendered or found and the kindest group of people look after the cats; volunteers and staffers alike.  On our first visit a kind hearted man introduced us to all the cats.  We agreed, since our lives were so up in the air, and were especially airborne at the time of kitty contact, just helping out would be great.

You see, some kitties need a bit of TLC.  They have been on the streets too long and have lost that part of their heart that is human.  Other kitties, lets face it, have been harmed by humans and want nothing to do with us anymore.  Fair enough, we can be a nasty breed.  So the foster care program gets kitties out of the cages and into homes where they can learn to purr at the touch of a hand and shed all over your black clothes.  Hubby and I felt up to the task.  Not only do we love cats but we love challenging cats.  Our cat, Marmalade, was once affixed with a cardboard label on his second only trip to the vet: CAUTION! WILL BITE! 

After a day of thinking about it and ringing up the leasing agent we decided to go for it.  We went back to SADS and met with Jacky.  She and a volunteer took us back into the kennels and we met the cats again.  The younger kittens tussled about with their roommates completely unaware of their predicament.  Ah, to be young and foolish!  The more senior kitties had their paws tucked under their bellies and squeezed their eyes in a meditative pose.  They knew, eventually, this too shall pass.  The more surly kitties slunk in the dark recesses of the cage and only their eyes could be seen.  They hissed if you came too close.

Up on the highest row, about five cages from the door was a peridot- green eyed beauty named Cleo.  As Jacky made her way through the room Cleo puffed up her white fluffy chest and gazed down on me like the Cheshire Cat.  Hubby and I knew it was at the discretion of the staff which cats were most in need of re-homing so you can imagine my relief when Jacky said, 'Oh Cleo here, she's been with us for awhile.  I think she could really benefit with some time outside'. I jumped at the opportunity.  From the way she looked at me I felt this cat already knew me.  But I did feel some trepidation. 

I was worried she wouldn't fill the kitty boots before her.

We loved Marmalade.  

We loved Ollie.

We loved Lumpy. 

Great cats had come before her.  Would she fit in with us?

Every worry I had melted away when we got her home.  This cat was insta-purr.  She gleefully padded about our little apartment purring her heart out.  She was afraid of everything from the TV, to the kettle, to plastic bags, to barking dogs.  And on more than one occasion we had to fish her out from under the bed.  She settled in slowly but at night I heard her under the bed purring and I smiled.  By August I knew it.  She was ours.  

I lived in fear that SADS would call and say someone wanted to adopt her, could we please bring her in?   When Jacky did call my heart leapt into my throat.  Was someone there to adopt Cleo?  No, she was just checking in.  So I told her the good news, we wanted to adopt Cleo.  Wonderful!

It was the best $70 we ever spent!  Le Pusse is de-sexed, micro-chipped and tattooed.  She eats the finest French kibble and has the most luxurious soft blankets to kneed and cuddle.  She gets a brushing every day.  You might say she is spoiled.  But I get so much more.

I get a cat that sleeps on my legs and a cat who chirps at me in the morning until I put ice cubes in her water mug.  I get a cat that runs laps in our apartment and plays with a furry toy mouse.  I get unconditional affection and the best little pal a person could ask for.  She sits on my fabrics when I sew, she watches me when I make coffee.

Now a year later you would barely recognize this kitty.  She has gained a bit of weight and her coat is silky smooth.  She's not afraid of the TV, or the kettle, or plastic bags.  I take her outside to sniff the morning air and her head bobs up and down on the currents of the last breeze.

I watch as she gets trapped in the winter sunbeams that warm her belly and our chilly apartment.  I see her abdomen heave with satisfaction as she spontaneously erupts into self-soothing purrs.  She doesn’t do much, and she doesn’t have to.  She may be lazy but she is wasting time with us now.  And isn’t that the best thing in life?  To surround yourself with people and pets you love wasting time with?

So, if you are thinking about getting a pet, do us all a favour and go to your local adoption centre.  There are so many great pets out there that could benefit from a little TLC.

Time wasted to date with Le Pusse: One year and counting!


  1. I really loved this post.
    Wasting time with a cat is beautiful!

  2. How i wish I wasn't allergic to cats... they are lovely little creatures.

  3. Pets are the best time waster :) I have a friend who adopted a dog from a similar place, they started of fostering him and when I spoke to her a week later they had decided to keep him as they thought it to cruel to give him back.