Our cat has been astray. She doesn't usually walk off like that. You see, she grew up as a housecat and it took her quite a while to discover there was an outside world, and to connect to her inner sense of freedom and independence after I had decided it was time for her to have a more 'natural' life. I don't think it's right to keep a cat (or any animal) just inside, but this cat was a rescue and she didn't know any better during her first year or so before we got her.
Well, I showed her the way out of the back window.
We are unfortunately living close to a main street and only the backyards of this row of old houses are safe for her to roam in. So, the backwindow seemed perfect to get her out there and explore the world, and we soon found that my idea worked out fine, and from then on our little lady became just a 'normal' cat that could go outside and return whenever she wanted.
She would mainly disappear at night-time and a small 'Meow' would greet me in the morning when she would sit patiently on the bed-room window sill, calling me to open the backwindow to let her in.
Perfect. This was our daily ritual, and I am rather fond of her waking me up - better than any alarm clock.
But then - all of a sudden she didn't return.
We waited one day, two days, three days and no sight of her.
Everyone said that it is normal for cats to disappear once in a while. And of course, we knew that. But in 4 years she had never done this and I grew more and more worried that something might have happened to her.
Maybe she hurt herself... or she got locked in by mistake in a gardenshed or a cellar room... or she had a deadly accident... or ate poison? We started to inform the neighbours house by house down the road, but nobody had seen her. My daughter put up messages in shop-windows and on trees with a picture of our cat and we waited. Yes, we received quite a few phone-calls, and a some kind people who were sure to have spotted her came to our door to inform us. But it was never her. Many cats look similar to ours, you know, she's just that typical mix of colours with white, grey-brown, black and orange, tabby-striped.
But my daughter, Lisa, was very determined to follow up all the tips we were given and went out to the different areas to look for our little lady.
She bought a big box of special cat food (she told me it was a total bargain when I glanced with raised eyebrows onto the receipt), and went to different places to feed straying cats and maybe attract our own in this way.
Not far from here - literally around the corner - there is an open backyard of a company selling electrical gadgets. Lots of cars are parked there and also, quite a few cats without a specific owner call it their home. After receiving a phonecall that our cat might be there, too, Lisa passed by that place whenever possible. She loved caring for and talking to those cats, some quite rough-looking, some quite thin; feeding them and stroking them. All of them were named lovingly and every time she came back home she had an exciting cat-story to tell.
This went on for three weeks.
Then, all of a sudden - I was just working in the garden, pulling weeds in the summery heat - I heard an excited cry. "Mom, Mom, I got a wonderful surprise for you!!!" It was Lisa. She entered the garden and in her arms she was carrying - our little lady! She had found her in that backyard sitting on a tree, whining.
Lisa got her down and now she's back! A little on the skinnier side and with an anxious expression in her eyes, but she was fine, totally fine. We were all overjoyed and happy, and I think our cat is glad, too, that she has returned to her save haven, full of nice food, cuddles, comfy beds to lie on and laps to hang out in.
We don't know what exactly happened to her and why she hadn't found her way back home by herself. But there are however other news that she brought back with her. We are pretty sure that she's going to be a Mommy in about 4 weeks and we are so excited about it!