I knew I was ready to bring a new kitten into our family. Most of my travel for the year was done so I would have weeks at home to get to know the little fur ball. That weekend there was a wildlife and pet expo at the local park so Steve and I headed over. I saw a lot of cats and kittens there but none really struck me as our new family member. And while there were a lot of great rescues there, I’m a big fan of a local rescue named Independent Cat Society (ICS) and I try to support them as I can. I really wanted to adopt my new furry friend from them. So after the expo, Steve gamely agreed to go to the shelter.
Did I mention I was set on adopting a male, black cat? My dear Smokey had passed away almost three years prior. He was a deep sable/black cat who’d been my constant companion and friend for 19 years. He was irreplaceable, the perfect cat. Since I’ve always had a fondness for black cats, and I’ve had the best luck with male cats temperament wise, I was set on that combo. I looked and looked. ICS has lots of cats looking for homes. But there weren’t any male black kittens. Oh there were plenty of young, wonderful black cats, but I was set on a kitten this time. Though, to be honest, if I could have, I’d have come home with both a senior cat and a kitten. My dear husband keeps me sane by setting limits and I love him for it.
Have you ever heard that sometimes we get what we need, rather than what we want? I’m a firm believer that the Universe will provide all that we need, even when we think we know better. It happens in all areas of my life, including in my choice of cats. In one of the cages were four kittens, about he age I was looking for. Two were black and two were tortoiseshell, but all were females. I almost moved on but one of the little black girls meowed at me so I had to pay them more attention. Maybe I could go for a female black kitty? Oh, she was playful and fun, but she just wasn’t ‘right’. However, her sister Nutmeg was ready for a home and seemed sweet. She wasn’t what I was looking for, but she felt ‘right’.
So I had narrowed it down to two cats, Nutmeg and a male black cat named Figaro who was about a year and a half old. Both were sweet, both needed homes, and Steve said he’d love either. How to choose? The lovely folks at ICS said I didn’t have to make my choice that day, so I didn’t. They wrote down both names and told me I would have first right of refusal on either cat if anyone else was interested while the application was processing. Once we were approved, I’d have to choose.
They called us on Wednesday to congratulate us that the application was approved. Of course, I was thrilled. Then I panicked, how to choose? Before the call I was certain, mostly, but now? When she did finally ask, I knew it had to be Nutmeg. I couldn’t bring her home until she was spayed, which meant Friday, but we were headed out of town to a writing convention (which was a blast). She said no problem, we could pick her up on Monday, October 10th. I’m full of gratitude for this little freckle faced kitten. She’s the snuggliest, most lovable little girl and just what I was looking for.
Today, November 2nd, is the third anniversary of Smokey’s death. His loss hit me hard but Steve and I like to think he stayed around long enough to see us married and happy. He passed away in my arms at our condo and it was so hard to say goodbye, even though I had known it was coming for a long time. This morning I took Nutmeg in for her check-up and she’s doing great. She sits with me when I’m writing and tries to lay on my keyboard when I’m working, just like a certain black cat used to. And sometimes she goes streaking by so fast she’s like a trail of smoke in the corner of my eye.