I wish we had a pet. Unfortunately, our landlord doesn’t share the same opinion and there’s a ban on pets in our lease. Allegedly this is due to allergies, but since when has anyone ever been allergic to a goldfish?
So a couple of months ago I’m minding my own business, making the dinner in our kitchen. Our friend Jenny is visiting and we’re chatting away while I cook. A movement catches my eye and I look up to find a cat sat on the windowsill right in front of me. It’s mouth is open in a big miaow and it’s looking straight at me!
After getting over my shock, I go over to the back door to let it in. Our kitchen is tiled, and we clean, so I’m figuring it’s a safe zone as far as cat dander goes. The cat marches straight in as if it owns the place, and starts rubbing against our legs and miaowing loudly as if it had something extremely important to tell us if only we weren’t so stupid as to not understand cat-language. We spent a good while in the kitchen with this handsome feline, playing and stroking her. She was a very friendly cat, and absolutely beautiful to look at. We decided to name her Kip, after Rudyard Kipling, because she looks like she’s stepped straight off the pages of one of the Just So Stories. Or possibly The Jungle Book.
We wondered where she had come from, and why she chose to visit us that Autumn evening. It seemed like she was quite familiar with the windowsill miaow ritual; maybe she’d belonged to the previous owners and had come back to check up on us? Maybe she was a neighbourhood cat? Maybe she was an Aristocat?
Eventually she departed into the night, and we thought that would be the last of her. We’d enjoyed her visit but she was obviously owned and loved by another family, so that was that.
Until a few days later, I’m cooking again in the kitchen and again get the fright of my life when Kip shows up, miaowing her head off, in the same spot on the windowsill. I give the yell of “Kip’s back!” to alert S, who is her biggest fan, of her return. Again, I let her in, and again she stays for a good play and to make quite sure we haven’t got anything for her to eat, and then departs gracefully.
This pattern was repeated a handful of times that month, always with the rousing cry of “Kip’s back!!”. S would sometimes eat his dinner on the floor just so he could sit with her. Apart from an upsetting episode with a toad, all was well with our elegant visitor and we looked forward to her appearance on our windowsill. And then one day, she stopped coming.
We always keep a look out for Kip on the roads around our house, as there are a lot of very friendly neighbourhood cats. But we’ve never caught sight of her again. I wonder, will Kip ever come back?