(Long post - but worth the read!)
Well, the kids finally named the cat - Missy....
Tuesday evening, we noticed that Missy wasn't coming around anywhere in the house. We looked all over for her and couldn't find her. We told the kids to not worry, as cats will often find a nice quiet place and take a nap.
Well, during supper, Missy never showed up. I noticed that the dogs across the street kept barking and wouldn't calm down. "Just for fun" I looked out to make sure they weren't barking at Missy. We looked for Missy again and couldn't find her.
I went outside with a flashlight and looked all around the house and the yard, and called out "Here, Kitty, Kitty" (as if she recognized my voice the second day). Since we couldn't find her in the house, I told my fears to Sally, that I thought that one of the girls had accidentally let the cat out of the house.
We sat down to watch American Idol and I heard the dogs barking next door even more, so I went outside again with the flashlight. (It's been to Africa and back!) I walked across the street (jumping a ditch filled with rainwater) and shined it all around the neighbor's yard, hoping they wouldn't call the police on me. I didn't see anything and was back on my porch when I took one last look across the street.
That's when I saw her. Like a flash of black lightening, the terrified cat dashed from the neighbor's yard towards the South and down the block.
I took off after her calling "Here, Kitty, Kitty" (as if she recognized by voice). She actually did stop and waited for me to get to her before she took off again back to the neighbor's yard. I finally caught up with her in the neighbor's yard and that poor little kitty-cat was definitely traumatized; you see, she has never been out of the house before!
Her fur was all standing straight up and her eyes were dilated wide open. She had lost her collar. She had clearly been overwhelmed by her first outdoor experience.
As I picked her up, I saw the fear in her eyes. She hissed and scratched and tried to get away. I tried to calm her by talking softly and rubbing her ears and face. She did seem to calm a little bit. By the time that I made it back to our house, she was in a tolerable state.
However, I began to have some doubts... Is this the right cat? What happened to her collar? Why is her tail so fluffy?
What nonsense! How many little black kitty-cats can there be in our neighborhood? Well, I brought her in the house and everyone said that they didn't think it was Missy, because her tail was too fluffy. I took her back outside and let her go. She ran under my car. I went in, but came right back out, knowing full well, that the tail was big because she was scared silly.
She came out from under the car and came on to the porch, where I had sat down. She sat there by my while I stroked her fur. Finally, I decided it was our cat and took her in the house. The kids were crying and when I told them I thought it was her, everyone rejoiced.
We put her down and left her alone for a little while. She went into the office and hid behind the desk. I went in and sat down. She came out to me a couple of times to let me pet her. Finally, her eyes began to get yellow again and her fur began to lay down. She was calming down.
I decided she had calmed down enough that I could leave her alone so I went to hang up my coat. As I did, Missy followed me down the hall and went straight to Emily. Her tail was all the way back down to little-bitty and we discovered that she hadn't lost her collar after all; it must have been the fluffy fur simply hiding it.
Then I had a thought.
I walked back down the hall and looked into the office. Behind the desk was a little back kitty cat that clearly didn't belong to us! What was clear was that Missy had never left the house and had found a really, really quiet place to take a very long nap!
As a follow up to the story, I let the other cat out and she showed up last night at our front door, meowing, wanting some more of that good Boyne lovin'!