Somewhere in July, a black and white Persian cat started hanging out in our yard. Very skittish. Would not address us, ran when he saw us. Poor sweetie. Collar-less cats are not unusual in our neighborhood. Charlie, for example, is a grey cat that is also skittish, but he belongs to my neighbor Joyce. She can't keep a collar on him. We lost five collars on Grendel before Dan found him a puppy collar.
So when we saw this cat, we tried to approach him. No dice. We left kibble out, just in case. And yes, Charlie eats from it too. Grendel also eats from Charlie's stash that Joyce leaves out in her garage. Joyce would ask me if the Persian was my cat. No, I thought it was hers. Apparently, there's another man down the block who wondered the same thing.
So we left food out for the Persian. Timid cat. Didn't want much to do with us at all, very wary, and we couldn't touch him. He'd run and jump if we tried.
I'm going to condense this. Too many boring details, so let's talk about November the second.
It had snowed the day before, and I was concerned, of course. I went to put food out, and found him waiting as he sometimes did. But THIS TIME...
I invited kitty in. I stood guard as he ate, but this time I held the door open and asked if he wanted to come inside. He followed me up the porch stairs. It might have taken five or seven minutes, but it felt like twenty before he crept his way into the kitchen and I quietly shut the door.
He looked alarmed when the exit closed, but still ventured inside. I used my most soothing voice, as he slinked into the living room. He sniffed Grendel's face. Grendel has always been nice to him, and sniffed back.His sniffed Freya's face, She gave him The Swat.
Once he figured out there was a basement, he hid in the spare bedroom, under the futon. I left him a dish of food and let him diffuse. A day and a half, I left food, and left him alone.
That evening, a different cat came up the stairs. He was shouty and purring. He demanded pets, and rolled around being adorable so we would indulge him. We won him over! Yay! He's been here ever since.
Here's the thing....He's not a stray cat. Someone must be missing him. I'm doing the right thing and looking for his owners, But...
I had other names for him. I thought about naming him Balder, Norse god of all things pure and innocent.(Bald-er. People wouldn't get it, and would think that was a dumb name for a fluffy kitty) I thought about calling him Helios, for the Greek god who drives the sun chariot, based on his beautiful yellow eyes that look like an eclipse when his pupils are large. I started calling him 'Amir' because he was a little prince and he was a Persian longhair. Many people know this...Yes, 'Amir' is the Persian word for 'Prince'.
I'm not sure I like it. I catch myself saying, "C'mere Amir." and it sounds dumb. And Amir Milward sounds like 'A mere Milward.'
Not particularly imaginative of me, but he suits it. He's a little prince. He yells for affection and food. He likes to be held. I tried brushing him, and he knows the routine. I wouldn't say he likes it like Freya does, but he accepts the brush and rolls over accordingly. He's taken over the couch and has taken other surfaces accordingly. What do I mean by that? I mean my desk, the couch, my makeup table, the kitchen counter. Everything, everywhere. But he's rather polite about it, if that makes sense. He knows how to play with toys and he SHOUTS for attention.
We're in love with him, but he clearly belongs to someone. I've put him on all my social media, including 'Next Door', the neighborhood app. No answers, no replies in ten days. Currently looking for posters about him.
The truth is, we don't need another mouth to feed, but what could I do? Leave him to scrounge kibble from our yard? What if it gets REALLY cold. Today was -20 Celsius, and it's early yet. There's still December and January to get through. . I can't imagine. Here's another thing. He's been here for ten days and NOT ONCE has he asked to go outside. He isn't fixed either. He also hasn't sprayed. He's an impressively good cat. Like he's been trained. He even knows not to scratch the furniture with a simple "Noooo."
There is no microchip. That doesn't mean this won't end in heartbreak. I do believe someone else owns Amir. In the meantime, I will look for his owners and hope that they will let me be a part of his life once we find them. In the meantime, Amir is a part of this family. He will be safe, warm and loved.