I am very allergic to cats, and as a result have never really cared for them all that much. As a species, felines don’t really seem all that bent out of shape about it though. I guess the feeling is mutual.
But there is a HUGE exception to this rule, and her name is Judy.
Judy is our neighbor’s cat and she is the best cat in America. In good weather, Judy is outside a lot and she comes running next door to greet my kids when we pull into the driveway from daycare. She lets them pet her and then they gleefully run around in the yard together like they are performing a toddler/animal version of The Sound of Music. Jack, Norah, and Judy are buds and if anyone ever lays a finger on that cat I will go all kinds of crazy Mama Bear on them.
There have never been any instances of human threat to Judy, but there is one cat that fits all of my stereotypes of cats who also lives in the neighborhood and who has it out for Judy. I don’t know the cat’s name, because she is the worst, so let’s just call her Terrible. Terrible brings us two terrible stories.
Here Kitty Kitty Kitty
One day Judy was out minding her own business in the yard and Terrible comes and chases her up a tree, standing at the bottom scaring the living daylights out of poor sweet Judy. Terrible finally went along on her terrible way, but Judy remained treed. Not knowing the first thing about cats except that they make me sneeze and generally seem aloof and uninteresting (I’m sorry Judy, not you), I was really worried that Judy was going to be stuck in the tree forever unless we either a) called the fire department or b) saved her ourselves.
Glen, who is also very firmly Team Judy, and I went with option b and brought a ladder out to the tree. We then spent the next hour trying to convince Judy to jump to Glen so he could carry her to safety. Our neighbors weren’t home at the time and we were walking the very thin line between wanting them to come home to help and not wanting them to come home because we had a giant ladder up on a tree saving/harassing their cat.
All we managed to do in 60 minutes was convince Judy to climb further up the tree because she is smart and we were acting like lunatics. We took down the ladder and went back in the house looking for a bowl of milk and some cheese, because maybe cats like cheese? In that time Judy carefully reverse scaled the tree and walked back to her house. Because she is a cat, with claws. Good job, Judy.
Whenever You Call Me, I’ll Be There
The second time I witnessed Terrible being terrible Glen wasn’t home so I had to woman up and save Judy solo. Terrible was in the yard chasing Judy and hissing at her and when I heard the commotion I was filled with the rage of a thousand suns so I dropped what I was doing and ran outside. Full sprint.
When I got to the neighbors’ driveway Terrible stopped hissing at Judy – that was positive. But then she set her sights on me – big negative. She started doing that scary cat thing where they approach slowly like they are channeling their inner lion on the Serengeti. So I did what any self-respecting human would do, and ran home to hide.
I checked in on Judy through the window though, and she was okay because Terrible got distracted by Crazy Person and had wandered away. But I’ll always know that Judy deserved better that day. And every day, for the rest of time.
So thank you, Judy. You’re a doll and we adore you with all our hearts. And a big thank you to our neighbors. Because of you, my kids think that we actually have a pet and I hope to ride this train of lies for at least the next 5 to 7 years.
With crazy eyes and a stuffy nose,
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