Janice Williams Loves Austin And sometimes I write about it.

October 23, 2011

Cats in the Night

Filed under: Cats,Childhood Memories,Family — Janice @ 10:12 am

We’ve been dealing a lot with cats lately. Not ours. They have been perfect angels.  tolerable.

It’s tomcats in the neighborhood. Mark slept out on the catio/screened-in porch/sleeping porch one night and said he heard a plaintive “meow meow.” Worried that it was our cats, he investigated and found our cats and they were perfectly fine. Then the meowing turned into yowling, driving our cats nuts and keeping anyone from getting a good night of sleep.

I get up earlier in the morning than Mark does so I try to keep things quiet and let him snooze. One day this week Willie, usually our better behaved cat, came tearing into the bathroom while I was showering and was up in the window, tearing into the metal blinds so that he could see outside and GET TO THAT CAT. Of course, he can’t get to that cat, but he hops through and around and in and out of the metal blinds, making a huge racket and, here I am, stuck in the shower unable to stop him.

As I type this, a cat has just begun that tomcat yowl in the front garden. I can’t see him, but I can hear him.

We didn’t used to have the noise. We had strays: T.C., a sweet skinny black cat that still comes around. Stubb, a big orange cat with a missing tail who has been gone a long time and I am sure he has probably gone to the great litter box in the sky. Rocky, a raccoon-looking cat that wasn’t around enough to even really remember his name (I’m guess that was what I called him). But now there are several cats in the neighborhood that I don’t think are strays – they are well fed—but they certainly like to come visit and sometimes get in a ruckus that really wakes up the neighborhood.

This has all taken me back to a hot night in Randall County. When we lived in Colorado Springs, we came down to the Panhandle often to visit and check on our house there. We came down one time and my sister and I were sleeping on my grandmother’s living room floor. The house was hot and the front door was open. I heard a “baby” crying and was quite alarmed at what I was hearing and didn’t quite know what I was supposed to do. Remember, I was about 10 at the time. I listened and listened and couldn’t imagine why there was a baby crying outside the house. Eventually, my grandmother came through the living room. I can picture her in her long turquoise silky housedress/housecoat and her slip-on house shoes. She always walked with a pronounced limp, dragging her “old crippled leg” (as she called it), and I remember her coming from her bedroom toward the front door. I said, “Mamma, is that a baby?” and she said, “No, that’s tomcats fighting.” At that point, the sound completely changed to me and it was much more obvious that it wasn’t a baby. I was so relieved. I don’t know if she was able to do anything to stop the yowling, I don’t remember if she even went outside, but I will never forget that moment and exchange.

1 Comment »

  1. There is nothing more irritating than the mating calls or fights or whatever of tom cats. Your daddy would feed any cat that came around so we ended up with all that yowling near our house.

    Comment by Pat — October 24, 2011 @ 5:07 pm

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