“He’s into the towels again,” Melinda said. She looked over at her husband where he sat next to her in the living room, listening to the cat noises emanating from the kitchen with a bemused expression on his face. She envisioned the kitchen as she listened to her pet’s murmurings. The open cabinet door and the cat scrabbling through her neatly piled kitchen towels. She’d just have to refold them, yet again.
“Yup,” Mike answered with a sage nod.
The great sumo hunter gradually tripped his way into the living room, and over to where Melinda relaxed in her wing-back recliner. Dragging his prey, he carried himself and his trailing scrap of pink towel as proudly as if he were a lion, king of beasts on the plains of Africa. He came to a stop beside her chair and looked up at her entreatingly, pink towel hanging from either side of his mouth.
“Brrrrrroooowwwwww! Brrrr… brrerr….”
“He’s inviting us to share in his kill.” She said, and heard her husband chuckle.
“Big hunter,” she said affectionately, looking down at her cat, and reaching to stroke his orange-striped head. The tabby paused to enjoy the petting, raising his head to meet her hand and arching his back. As he did so he dropped the towel, and gave himself up to the delight of having his chin scratched. Then, evidently deciding that he had received his due, he turned away and trotted back into the kitchen. His round sides jiggling up and down somewhat detracting from the image of fierce hunter and provider.
“Brrrrroooowwwwww…. Brrrrooooowwwww…” came the muffled voice of the cat as he wrestled yet another towel from the deepest, darkest recesses of the kitchen cabinet.
Melinda just sighed, her lips twitching upward.
All 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 hungry cats leapt from the floor in the kitchen up onto the counter, then down onto the floor again, rubbing against the woman’s legs and tripping her as she tried to walk in to the pantry to get their breakfast. They yowled at her loudly about how very hungry they were, and how they must be fed, and they must be fed now! Meow! Now!
Daisy, much more polite than the cats, lay down quietly in the doorway to the kitchen and waited patiently for her breakfast.
The old woman lined five, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 kitty dishes on top of the old steam radiator in the kitchen because it was the only place that the cats wouldn’t jump up onto and knock everything over while she was trying to fill their dishes.
She opened the cabinet door in the pantry where the cat food was stored. One cat, a big, white, boy cat with black spots, named Tom, climbed right into the cabinet amongst the bags and boxes and cans, to try to get the food out for himself. The woman laughed and pulled him out, then reached for the big, blue bag of dry cat food.
The large bag, crinkled in her hand and all 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 cats meowed loudly that they should be eating that food right now! The woman walked carefully over to the radiator with the bag held high in her hand as all five cats wove in and out between her feet. She unrolled the top of the bag, making more wonderful crinkling noises and smiling as the cats meowed in response.
She put the right amount of food in each dish and quickly as she could, set all the dishes on the floor for the cats. The cats tumbled over each other to get to the dishes. Tom pushed the others out of the way and tried to eat out of their dishes. The old woman had to keep picking Tom up and setting him back at his own dish.
Finally, with the cats happily eating their breakfast, the old woman got out Daisy’s bowl and filled it with her favorite meal, Doggie Delight. Daisy stood up in anticipation and wagged her shaggy, brown tail, politely. “There you are, my patient girl,” the woman said, and placed the big, green bowl on the floor in front of the dog.
Then the woman sat down on the stool at the kitchen counter with her head resting in her hand. She started thinking about what she would like for her own breakfast, when she felt 1, 2, 3, 4 , 5 warm, furry cats rubbing against her leg, and heard 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 cat meows singing through the air asking, “!s it lunchtime yet?”
Every so often a children's story comes knocking at the door of my heart and asks, like Pinocchio, to be made real, taking on form and life in our world.