MONDAY 11th FEBRUARY 2013
Back in December my sister’s cat, Chelsea, went missing for a couple of days. She gave me the bare facts and I wrote this for her…
On the night of 11th December, a biting chill swirled around our estate, colliding with the wet floor and decorating it with a thin layer of ice.
It was 2215hrs and as I opened our front door, a very curious house kitten decided she wanted to explore the outside world.
Chelsea, our beloved new feline family addition, dashed past me in all her ginger biscuit and clotted cream glory. The little fur ball had seen her opportunity and was making good her escape down the alley toward the left hand side of the house.
I followed the track she had taken on her bid for freedom, only for it to lead me to a lonely, bitter night prowling the streets, desperately searching for her before finally admitting defeat at a freezing four am.
The morning of December 12th hung heavy with hope as images of me swinging the front door open to a mass of apologetic fluff, meowing for forgiveness, danced around my head.
But my little fur ball was nowhere to be seen – despite my relentless squeaking of her favourite toy as I stood shivering at the door. Downhearted with worry, I made my usual journey to work, thoughts of Chelsea refusing to allow my mind to focus on anything else. I shifted my focus towards proactive steps to try and locate her, pulling together posters to put up around the neighbourhood and distribute in my own door to door enquiries with my neighbours. I contacted all the vets to make them aware that Chelsea was missing and that she was a house cat and had not been micro chipped.
Wrapped in my own fluffy layers on a particularly cold winter’s day, I ventured around the houses with my leaflets, where Beth from number seven kindly informed me she had sent out emails. By 8pm I decided to call it a night, when the cold had bitten its way through to my core and absorbed all feeling from my fingers. A phone call from number nine with a sighting out the front soon had me back out battling the cold, her favourite toy grasped firmly in my hand as her name was carried on my vaporising breath. I reluctantly gave in when the ginger fur ball did not appear.
The morning of December 13th was ground hog day as images of her purring at the front door slammed around my aching head. I struggled through my day at work, returning home to a touching pile of letters and printed emails that had been posted through the door. It was overwhelming to think that the neighbourhood was concerned and helping me look for Chelsea. Another two hours of frantic searching followed only to churn up further disappointment.
Calling it a night, a knock at the door from the neighbours from number eight alerted me that they had seen her outside their house before she ran away again.
This time I was going out with the intentions of finding her, determined not to come back until she was wrapped safely in my arms.
Chanting her name, I heard her little ‘squeak’ resonate from the bushes right next to number nine. Keeping still, I repeated her name until the welcoming sight of her head popped out of the bushes.
Relief washed over me as I managed to get her to come towards me – until a supermarket delivery van trundled into the street and scared her away. This process was repeated three times, the offender replaced each time by another van, a car and then finally a dog.
Frustrated, I decided to go and get Chelsea’s basket and blanket. The stubborn little thing refused to get in, resorting in me wrapping her up in the blanket. Fear overwhelmed her and she managed to wriggle out and escape again.
I had a light bulb moment and grabbed her wet food; only for this attract the greed of all the other cats in the street apart from Chelsea herself! They thought they were in for a real treat.
Chelsea loved nothing more than her treats – more so than her normal food! I quickly grabbed a bag of her treats and crept close enough to the little tinker, scattering a few down in front of her.
A quizzical expression formed on her face. I decided to rattle the bag, dropping a few treats at a time as I walked in the direction of our house.
Thankfully, she decided to follow the little treasure hunt I was creating towards the front door. I dropped some inside the house and she instantly ran in! Relief swept over me as the two hours of coaxing her home had finally come to an end.
I locked the door, tipped wet food and treats in her dish, gave her a fresh bowl of water and made her bed all cosy. As she snuggled in to me, the purrs escaping her lips were relentless, whisking her off into a peaceful, happy sleep, dreaming of her adventure.
Love Missuswolf xxx