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14 December 2009

Stray Cats

There are many stray cats living in my neighborhood. Pictured below is "Lady". She's one I kind of adopted. Not like she'd ever come inside, but she does sleep in a bed on our porch, and I feed her regularly. She had been previously cared for by our next door neighbors, but they moved away and Lady was left behind. Again, not that they would have been able to take Lady with them (except by force); she is simply and outside cat and not going to be moved inside for any reason.

Lady gets by on her own quite well actually. We have at least two or three neighbors who regularly leave food out for her and the other strays. The interesting thing about Lady is however independent she may be, she also requires love and attention. More than asking for food, she will make a point to stop whomever happens to be coming in or going out to let them know she would like some affection. She won't let you pass without stopping for a moment or two and petting her. She especially likes reassuring words and comforting gestures. I often feel as if she is purposely stopping me to slow me down, force me to breathe, relax and perhaps lower my blood pressure some.

All the cats in the neighborhood provide much entertainment and lessons to anyone willing to slow their hectic schedules down and observe. There are at least four or five cats I see on a regular basis. They certainly have their territories marked out and seem to patrol the same areas every day. I think to myself that these cats are living the life. There's not a huge amount of traffic on our side streets and most people if not friendly to the cats are not hostile. This NJ suburb isn't exactly Key West, but the cats have free reign to do pretty much whatever cats do, and that is as it should be. After all, a cat should be allowed to be a cat.

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