The Cat, the Kennel and the Skate Board: A True StoryPublished January 25, 2010
Meeting devoted cat lovers from all over the world is one of the things that I most enjoy about hanging out on the Internet. I have had the opportunity to make some incredibly wonderful dear friendships, and it is always exciting to be able to share our passion for cats, no matter how great the distance. I find it fascinating to learn more about how many of our cat-related customs, here in the United States differ from some of the folks across the "pond". For instance, the question about whether it is ok or prudent to let our cats outdoors in our country seems to pose absolutely no problem for my friends in Great Britain. Apparently British cat lovers, from what I am learning, are amazed that many of us in this country prefer to keep our cats indoors. Since cat lovers here in the United States are constantly reminded that indoor cats live safer, longer and healthier lives, my British friends often disagree and obviously think very differently. From what I understand from exchanging information with my British friends, they are totally at ease having their cats roam in their gardens, basking in the sunlight, sniffing the flowers. After all, the enriched environment that all cat lovers strive for our cats exists right in their back yards. Narla So I was not at all surprised when I received an email from my dear friend Ruth who lives in County Durham, England. It certainly exemplifies the lengths to which some folks will go to keep their cats happy in the great outdoors. So I tip my hat to Ruth and her sister Babz, for their obvious devotion to the feline species. The recipient of their tireless passion goes to one particularly lucky elderly kitty, Narla, who belongs to one of their neighbors. It seems that Narla enjoys the warmth of the sun during the nice weather, but is not at all interested in being outdoors in the cold of winter. And in spite of their trying to "entice her in for a warm" Narla prefers the comfort of her own home, and the thought of being outdoors is not to her liking at all. So after seeing an ad in a local paper for a kennel for £15 they thought that it would be grand to put the kennel into the yard, so Narla would have the opportunity to experience the best of both worlds; outdoors but sheltered for warmth. So off they went for a brisk 10-minute walk to have a look at the kennel. After explaining to the seller what the kennel would be used for, she offered it to them for a "tenner" and the bargain was sealed. But now how to get it home? Described by Ruth as "really heavy and bulky" the kennel presented a problem until Babz spied a skateboard in the yard. Of course she immediately asked if they could borrow it, to which the seller agreed. After a struggle, the four of them managed to get the kennel balanced on the skateboard, but alas, it would not fit in the passage from the back garden to the front road. The seller, unhappily interrupting her husband's "tele" time, got him to lend a hand. He gave it a "good shove" and it finally shot through the passage. Ruth described the husband's somewhat curt demeanor and how he smirked at them and said, "Huh, useless women" quickly darting back into his house in order not to miss any more of his T.V. show. Ruth speculated that the sight of the women, the skateboard and the kennel must have been rather humorous to passers-by. But when they eventually made it back home, Ruth said that " A few neighbors looked mildly interested, but with a 'what are THEY up to NOW', look on their faces." She chuckled! I can only imagine what an amazing struggle it was to get that kennel off the skateboard and gifted to Narla for her enjoyment. But Ruth really wants to know, "Was the cat grateful?" I think this story totally demonstrates how a really devoted feline lover can reach creative solutions to problems when it comes to "spoiling" a cat, don't you? Leave a comment and share your thoughts.