Friday, February 3, 2012

Nature's Delights

As I looked outside my parents patio door yesterday morning there was a yellow tabby sitting in the mostly non-snowy grass patch soaking up the sun and it is in that moment that all my memories of cats came back.

Growing up on ten acres, a hobby farm in the north end of Rochester, where some of my friends though I was in the sticks I lived out so far in the country when really I was at tops 7 minutes from Target, that is once they built Target here back in the 1980's, before that I believe it took maybe ten minutes to get to Shopko. Jack's IGA was also only 7 minutes away. That was back in the day when Rochester had multiple small grocery stores, not the big box stores of today. I miss those little stores, but there are a few around yet. I am getting side tracked, by grocery stores of all things, probably because they have food in them and right now I could graze my way through a grocery store and still be hungry when I left.

So back to the farm. I had so many cats over the years and they all had great names, mother cat, Tom cat, funny face, one spot, two spot and no spot, calico, you get the picture. I loved each and every one, and they all had there own personalities. The first cats we ever acquired was via a drive by drop off. Some reason city people think it's a good idea to drop cats of in the country, well in this case it turned out. What little I do remember, I was probably 3 or 4 years old. We were out in the yard, a car stopped and then a few minutes later here were some cats, I think two but my mind wants to say three, in any case that is how we got our fist cats. From there it blossomed. There is a difference with farm cats vs. indoor cats and no matter how hard I try I can't love a house cat, never had one but even friends with cats I can't seem to fall in love with them. I guess I see cats as needing to run, hunt, and explore. That is their nature.

I can't even guess how many cats we had over the years, I could probably put together a picture timeline of all the cats seeing as I liked to take pictures of them. I have one where a mother cat had two sets of twins and two non-twins so I lined them all up and took a photo, or I did the line up and dad took the photo as I was probably five at the time. 

I could sit forever and pet the cats, I would train the kitties to walk up the plank into the shed window, because apparently I felt that was my job and I was good at teaching cats, um yeah! I would sit in the shed, I would sit in the yard, I would sit on the deck and just wait for a cat to crawl on my lap. I love how they wrap around and through your legs, purring in delight as you pet them from head to tail. 

I understand the love of a pet. I understand how they love you just because. And with living in the country and having free roaming cats you also get used to losing your cats to nature and occasionally to the bus you are riding home on. I felt the bump of the bus and looked up to see the bus driver looking at me in the mirror as we were coming up the hill to my house for drop off. It was minutes later as I walked up the driveway my brother drove home and told me my Tom cat was on the road, he had been hit. He was a cat we had acquired by a drive by cat drop. He was white and gray and had the widest head but he was a gentle cat. If I close my eyes I can almost feel all my cats as though they are right under my hand. 

If I could have any dream come true it would be to live back on acreage and have all the same kind of pets I had growing up, it wasn't just cats, it was turkey's (they too have a story), rabbits, chickens, ducks, sheep, cows, horses, and dogs. That's where my love lies, in nature with God's great creatures.

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