Friday, May 06, 2011

Everything but Cats

I am getting old. My body knows that. My right knee, neck and shoulder have been in misery, since the tree limb removal stint. But my mind can't accept I'm getting up there. So, like a college student, like I can go forever, I was up all night.

Why, you say?

Well, duh! I was after cats.

What else would part me and my bed?

I wanted to help catch the last two at the nursing home colony. Only now it's four. Two more males have showed up. This is the never ending colony. The last cat the animal crackers woman trapped was also a new show tame male, but beat up and skinny with wounds, abandoned apparently.

19 cats have been caught there so far. The original feeder of the colony had estimated there were seven cats in all, a serious understatement of fact.

Both females left are long hair and pregnant. They played around me, hungry, all night. So did raccoons and the biggest possums I have ever seen. Just when we thought the possum we were watching eat under the drop trap was the biggest thing we'd ever seen, he turns towards the bushes, intimidated, then scrambles off. Out waddles a possum twice the size of the first one. He was as long as the drop was wide, I swear.

Twice I was ready to yank the string which pulls the stick support from the drop trap on a cat when an employee car drove up, scaring off the target cat. Twice more a targeted cat was about to spring a live trap when an employee car drove up. Ever want to pull your hair out?

By 5:30 a.m., I knew I needed to get to the Albany business, to net that female with her kittens, if she had not moved them. I left a trap set and left my number with an employee who vowed to check the trap.

But at the warehouse, alas, the mom had moved her kittens. Where, on that vast property, with all it's building and materials, did she take them? I should have netted her last night. I knew she'd move them.

By then, the nursing home was calling me. A cat was caught she said. "Which one?" I wanted to know. She didn't know. "The other woman who looked said it was gruesome."

"Gruesome?" I say, thinking that a strange term to describe a cat, no matter how ugly the cat might be.

She came back after going to check the trap and said, "It's a huge possum."

"Well, the back of that trap can be unclipped and the back door lifted straight up," I said.

"I'm not getting near that thing," she interrupted.

"I'll be over," I said in a hang my head tone. I was beat.

Over I went, taking the kitten from the business, trapped the night before last. She would be fixed in place of any from the nursing home, since I failed at catching any.

But the night was not a total loss. We all have these nights, or days, where nothing seems to go right.

When I returned home, I dropped a partially used can of bait tuna, lost my grip in my exhaustion, onto the floor. Guess who was the first cat there, to start the cleanup--


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