My name is Oliver. I work as a marina cat here at Hindson. I’m an orange Tom and as such I guess I am a little on the small side for my type. I’d like to be able to say that even though I’m not huge I can punch above my weight class but, alas, that’s not the case as somebody here had me de-clawed. Kind of cuts down on my carousing, if you know what I mean. Plus, the place is full of dogs. They’re supposed to be on a leash but, well hell… you know.
My job is a pretty good one, I have to say. I patrol the yard at night, catching up with small rodents and the like and generally keeping a watch over things. It’s a big yard, but I get around okay. During the day, when the staff is here, I’m pretty much on down-time, you know? I get some food, go for walks and hang out at the bath-house, greeting the guests and sometimes giving them the old belly-ups for some strokes. Seems to make them happy. Sometimes, if I can sneak indoors, I’ll curl up for a snooze. That usually don’t last long though.
Anyhow, I want to tell youse about something that happened the other night. You’ll love this. Generally, I start my rounds around 1 or 2 in the morning. That’s a good time as the boaters are usually asleep by then or passed out from drinking (usually the latter) and I can get about with no interference. (The dogs are all locked up too, the losers). I break the patrol into 4 parts; the house and buildings, the pool and back lot, the northern docks and the main docks. I vary which one I go to when so’s that the rats and mouses don’t figure my schedule and hide up on me.
On this particular night I decided to stroll out onto the main dock around 1:30 in the morning and take a gander. Usually, because dock rodents don’t venture too far from shore, I only make it out as far as the ‘C’ dock split, but this night, there was something different in the air. I noticed it as soon as I got to ‘B’. I couldn't tell what it was at first but after a bit and when I had padded up the dock a ways, I recognized it... cat.
Now, by and large, I’m not a very ‘territorial’ guy by nature. In fact, I used to have a partner at the marina went by the name of Bucky. (The staff called him Ti-Ti for some reason. Haven't figured that one out.) He was a hoot, old Bucky was. He didn't care what anybody thought, he’d climb all over boats some of which I know for a fact had a mutt on them. But that didn't stop old Bucky. Trouble with Bucky was, he’d go over the road to hunt in the bush even though, like me, he had no claws to back him up. I told him a hundred times he’d get into trouble doing that one day. And sure enough, that day came and Bucky was just gone. Word has it a Fisher got him. That would be pretty hard, Bucky ending up as dinner for one of them tree-weasels. Anyhow, now I’m on my own and sometimes I get a hankering to hook up with my own kind. You know how it is. So when I caught that scent on the wind, I just had to investigate. Not angry, you know, just curious.
|Fisher maybe like what gots old Bucky|
There is a big boat right down the dock at the end where the smaller docks split off. It’s only been here a month but I like the owners. They always say hello and sometimes even give the old tummy a tickle. That’s swell. Sometimes I have to bite their hand to let them know I’m no push-over but, hey, that’s the game.
Well, you could have knocked me over with a mouthful of feathers if that smell I’d been smelling wasn't coming from their boat, the Mary Mary. They were ‘cat people! Well, I sort of knew that, but who figured they actually had one on board?
I hopped over the gunwale onto the deck. For sure there was a cat here and judging from all the hair floating about, there might even be two. And here’s something else. Unless I missed my guess they were females. Even better. Probably ‘fixed’ though, but honestly? I prefer them that way.
The doors were locked up and the lights were off. Most like the cats were inside too. So I took a look up on the bridge. Nothing. Then I noticed that the front hatch was open. I jumped up near the hatch and took a look down. Even with my vision it was too dark to tell. I got a little closer and climbed up onto the bug-screen that covered the hatch hole. Big mistake. That’s when all hell broke loose!
Usually screens are attached by screws or something but this one wasn't, it was just pressed on. I felt the screening begin to give way and before I could get off, the whole thing fell inside the boat with me scrambling to reach up to no avail. I landed hard, feet first of course and wondered how come everything was so soft. Then I smelled that smell. I had landed in the litter! What a break. But where were those cats? And how was I going to get out of here? I looked up at the night sky through the hatch. It was way too high to jump out. I would have to find another way.
|Saved by the box.|
All of a sudden I noticed something odd. It was really, really quiet. But I could feel somebody watching me. My hackles were dancing. That don't mean nothing, it just comes natural to guys like me. I slowly mounted the steps into the main salon and could see that there was another stateroom at the rear. I decided to explore there. I got as far as the stairway when I looked up. There on the bench, was a beautiful, white long-hair. Man, she was a knock-out. I wanted to be friendly so I gave her the old grin but she wasn't having any of it. She glared down at me and that’s when I noticed her claws. She still had them! From where I sat they looked like two rows of shining needles right at eye-level. I hoped this wasn't going to get ugly because I could already hear the beginnings of her throat growl. So, discretion being the better part of valour, I hunkered down to the floor and tried to look as submissive as possible. Just to buy time, you know? This seemed to work okay as now the white cat just sat there watching me. (But her tail was doing the four-step the whole time.)
I guess the noise of my entry and the subsequent growl had awakened the humans because a light came on and then the guy who owns the boat was right there in front of me. Fortunately, he recognized me. “Hey, it’s Oliver! How did you get in here?” Then there was laughter and I knew that everything was probably going to be all right. The guy was nervous about picking me up though. Must of thought I was freaked out or something. Which I wasn't. And now that the tension was broke, I thought maybe Whitey and I could get to know each other better. But it wasn't to be. To this day I don't know if there was another cat there. I guess, if there was, she was down lower in the stateroom.
|I leaves the boat.|