It was a dark and stormy night. ÔÇª No, seriously. It was a dark and stormy night. In San Francisco. A bone-chilling night that makes you wrap your scarf up a little tighter, and walk just a little faster to your waiting warm car. I wasn’t expecting to get a new cat that night, but sometimes these things just happen. You’re walking along, minding your own business, and then out of nowhere comes a little creature who needs a home, a cat who needs to be rescued. It happened to me that night.
But first, I’ll back up a little. It was a rough time. A big breakup had occurred, followed by two months of a head cold that kept coming back. My ex had taken the dog, and the two cats who remained — Finn and Thomas — did not get along at all. I was technically cat-sitting until my ex could take one of them — I had to keep them separated by a "baby gate," and neither one understood why — so I was definitely not looking to add another member to the already stressful household. I always try to welcome animals in need, but this was not an ideal time.
But on that dark and chilly night, everything changed in an instant. I walked along a sidewalk in San Francisco’s Hayes Valley neighborhood, my thoughts set on getting to my car and then back home, when my peripheral vision picked up a flash of white at the corner of an alley. I stopped, turned, and went back — and there sat the most adorable, little, white, fluffy kitty, with the most perfect blue eyes. She sat on the corner, looking so lost and forlorn it broke my heart. Her pink nose seemed to quiver.
"Take me home!" she seemed to say.
I picked her up right away and knew she had to come home with me. I cradled her carefully all the way to the car. She didn’t look hurt, but you never know. I spoke to her softly, words of comfort: "You’re safe, now." She was amazingly calm and didn’t move a bit as I quickly walked the rest of the way.
I put her in the back seat, where she settled down immediately and didn’t move the whole way home. She was quiet as a mouse, and I had to keep checking the back seat to make sure she was safe. She remained where I had put her, calm and peaceful.
When we got home, I decided the best place for her would be the bathroom, so she could take her time and get comfortable. She seemed to like it behind the toilet, so I let her stay there. She peered out from behind the tank, blue eyes shining.
When I introduced her to my two boy cats, they approached and sniffed her, touched noses, and then went about their normal cat-business. She didn’t seem to faze them much; I grew hopeful that it would work out. They had hardly noticed her, and she was so quiet and still that I thought maybe I could have a three-cat household after all.
It’s been almost a year since that night, and she still hasn’t come out from behind the toilet. But honestly, I would be quite shocked if she came out on her own. I pet her occasionally, I make sure she is clean and has everything she needs (which isn’t much), and she is always a welcoming presence in the bathroom.
I named her Flushy, and here she is:
She’s quite useful as well:
Who could have resisted those blue eyes? That perfect white fur?
Flushy is here to stay.
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