I’m not EITHER seeing things…they’re really there. Probably.

We were gone for a couple of days, and I was running around last night doing laundry, opening mail, and generally stepping out of vacation life back into the the real one.

I’d gone into the basement to move a load of clothes from washer to dryer when out pops a yellow cat I’d never seen before.

We don’t own a cat and haven’t since we put Junior down some months back. I’ve never even seen this cat in the neighborhood, though my neighbor Jennie talks about a big yellow cat she sees wandering around. If this is the same cat and it’s feral, it certainly looked well-fed, and the first thing I did is what you see cartoon characters do when they’re surprised. I rubbed my eyes. What was a cat doing in my basement, and how long had s/he been in there?

Without making a noise and without making too much of a fuss, the cat moved quickly up the stairs, and I followed, trying to look as friendly as possible. Here we were, me and a strange cat wandering upstairs, no big deal. I was going to open the screen door to let the cat out, but the thing took one look, and leaped about shoulder-height, throwing itself into the screen, which caused the door to snap open, and then the cat darted outside.

This time, I didn’t rub my eyes, but part of me felt like applauding. Obviously, the cat has some experience with screen doors — and maybe even this particular one. And now I’m wondering if it’s been hanging out when we’re gone, maybe snacking on our food, or watching cable.

Years and years ago, I left a pair of boots outside the front door of my apartment in Wichita, Kan., and the next day, I’d gone to put them on and found I had to stomp to get my foot all the way in. Something was not right, and when I took the boot off and shook it, out tumbled a slightly stunned mouse, which had evidently crawled in and hadn’t been able to crawl back out. It took a moment to compose itself, and then it, too, darted away — this time off the porch and toward the park next door.

To this day, I still empty boots out before I put them on, even though I’ve never again encountered a mouse. I don’t know. When you see wildlife — or barely-domesticated life — where it doesn’t belong, it makes you look around corners and wonder what’s on the other side. And I’ve been moving around all day waiting for that damn cat to poke its head up from the back seat, from the upstairs, from beneath the couch. So far? Nothing, but wait until I tell Jennie.

Published by datingjesus

Just another one of God's children.

Join the Conversation


  1. Wellllll — my mother had a possum that snuck into her basement every now and then — but she had a dirt cellar! What’s the foundation like at your house?

    1. Solid. It is the weirdest thing. We’d propped the back door open when we got back to unload the car, but not for every long. That may have been one determined cat. I still don’t know where it belongs.

  2. Weird! If it snuck in when you were unloading (most likely), how would it have gotten into the basement? Isn’t there a door in between? I’d be looking around corners, too, until I figured out how the cat got in. A flying squirrel got into our house when we lived in MA once. The thing was flying around our living room until it the slider was opened. It had gotten in through the fireplace.
    My son found a dead mouse in a pair of shoes he had kept in our garage over the winter. I didn’t witness him finding it, but ewww. And, you found a live one? Yikes! I won’t be leaving my shoes out there.

  3. Ok, I am an idiot. I now noticed the date on this post. My defense is I was half dreaming.

      1. I used to have a giant eraser, maybe 8″ long, with “I never make big misteaks.” written on it. I wondered if I was supposed to use another eraser to erase “misteak”.

        I have another 12 1/2 hours, so I’m sure I’ll surpass that one!

Leave a comment

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: