It seems that no matter where we live we have an affiliation with our neighbors’ cats. I’m not really a cat person, although I always seem to have one. They are too aloof to be a nice pet. Not like a dog that loves you no matter what, never makes demands and never considers itself above you. But I have met some individual cats over the years that I’ve grown to really like. One such cat was our neighbor’s cat Jackson.
I first met Jackson shortly after we moved into our first real home after my divorce. This home was our sanctuary after a tumultuous time and we loved it. We moved in, on what must have been the hottest day of the millennium. I remember carrying in the last load of furniture and collapsing in the middle of the living room floor with my daughter. We were both absolutely exhausted and dehydrated. But it was worth it! We spent eighteen glorious, happy months there and there are times yet when I look back on that period of my life and miss it.
A few days after we moved in, I took my morning coffee and headed to the sliding doors off the kitchen, that lead to the deck. I was surprised to find a big, rather ugly looking, tabby cat sitting demurely at the door, quietly looking in through the glass. He was very odd looking, with a sharp, sphinx like face. He dashed off as soon as I opened the doors though.
The following morning, same thing; same cat sitting at the door. This time I said hello to him and instead of rushing off he paused at the bottom of the stairs and looked over his shoulder at me before retreating. A few days late he was back and this time he let me pet him. That is until my own cat came tearing out the “cat door” and chased him off.
Several days later, I came into the kitchen one morning to make coffee and stopped dead in my tracks at the sight of a strange cat sitting in the middle of the kitchen, just staring. As soon as I talked to him he darted back out the cat door. The following day he was back, only this time I caught him eating my cat’s food. The next day I came home from work in the afternoon to find him curled up, sleeping on our sofa and the day after that I found him sleeping on my bed!
This was Jackson and this was his way; he would eventually get to where he wanted to go. That old saying; “give em an inch and they’ll take a mile” comes to mind. He did sort of grow on a person after awhile even if he was a bit ugly.