Look, I really need to get out of this for a while. The whole kitty season – bad monsoon – Ramadhan mish mash is driving me crazy and even though I have been squeezing my brain since morning, not a single word comes out.

One of those master class ad on Facebook said “Where do I begin? You stare at a blank paper in front of you and bleed”.

I’d be dead by then if I follow that advice, although I admire the writer who said it. Besides, it’s advertising, there has to be drama in it, and whatever expertise he is offering for USD 90 is scripted, written.

Looking around me, it’s like the end of World War II. Every single thing from yesterday newspaper to upside down, food bowls are on the floor. It doesn’t equal atomic bomb, of course, but it’s no lesser mess than the actual war zone.

The cats are also on the floor; sleeping with their belly full. Take Carol (Malaya’s baby) for example. He should have his own masterclass in sleeping on totally weird places and he done so tummy up or head dangling upside down. I’d love to know how he doesn’t get himself a stroke.

Tiptoe I was instead. I have the whole week of fundraising to take care of and no one will buy me if I just post a sign that said I am burnt out and had a stroke of writer’s block.

I went to my room, packed my laptop, and slipped out of the door like snake slithering in the middle of the night. I have this particular cafe in my mind that I know will not be full whatever the time and occasion, I love the sandwiches there, and I haven’t eaten the whole day.

Before I begin, an Instagram post doesn’t hurt.

What I got instead is a message about a stray cat who hangs around a certain boarding house and a request to pick it up.

I get hundreds of those everyday; and ninety percent of those admitted – with various level of truth – that they don’t have the money to care for the cat, yet (multiple choice) stay in elite area, use fancy phones, wear expensive clothes, ride gorgeous car (with gorgeous price), all of the above.

So, I am not going to delve into it, waste my time, my energy, and gives me nothing but bad mood and whoever I talked about will only look like this  and life goes on.

If the girl was not wounded, I would have said no. I am full and I can’t handle it. Even if I can, I will not extort more and more and more money to care for this cat or that cat and they still end up dead from an outbreak due to overcrowded house. I am not a hoarder and I don’t want to cross the line and be one. Nor will I be donning some sexy suit and be some sort of super hero anytime soon. Even if I am one, those super heroes themselves said: You cannot save the world alone.

Like, how many out of 1,600 Whiskers’ Syndicate’s follower actually contributed, much less being active? You all see my thank you posts. You know the names.

All of these well meaning people will not understand because it’s not and will never be their problem what happened. They just report, and whether or not someone out there is responding, they pat themselves in the back and consider themselves a hero.

They are, to a minuscule extent, though that most often doesn’t help.

This time, the girl hangs around an elite area. I don’t think it ever occurred to the reporter that he can help by keeping the girl in a box or something. Her place is between the cafe and my house so it’s ridiculous to criss-cross mad traffic home, pick up a carrier, and go back cris-scrossing even madder traffic, and pick the cat up.

I do what I do best: pushing my luck and trusting my gut’s pitch.

Took a taxi, stopped midway to give my driver a chance to break his fast, and go ahead pouring over Google Maps, looking for bearable pathways.

When I got there, the reporter was gone (I had a feeling that’s intentional, but I am not judging anything without solid evidence) but he told the concierge about me picking up a cat, so people there just stare at me from top to bottom as if I am descended from Venus (never heard of someone who drive across town plucking stray cats off the street, never even have the idea that that sort of street plucking creature even exist); but they get the cat anyway, and still stare at me looking like this  even until my taxi disappeared from sight.

She absolutely won’t stay put inside my bag, and her blood is smearing my clothing all over, but she is kind enough to eventually just sit on my lap while I call my vet, and we got home in one piece.

I left her in a cage, went back out to the colony, and go back as soon as I can, so I can give some first aid to that seemingly ouchy back.

The more I clip her fur so it won’t stuck into her wound, the more I see that her infection had spread. I sterilized a scissor and try to lift a little bit of loose skin and whoa! river of pus.

I squirted mild peroxide to clean her up, but someone will have to hold her because those loose skin needs to be cut.

When my vet came, we can’t find the end of it, so I figured she just take her because we need to spay her anyway.

She called me the next morning saying that she ended up stitching the girl halfway across her back because her infection is eating her flesh.

So, she is Frankenstein on one side and Francesca on the other.

Whatever it is, she is completely different when she went back home. She is calmer, and comfortable, and she loves to speak with her round, adorable eyes instead of meowing her lungs out like the first time.

She loves the window, she loves watching Kaka rolling in the deep (of the front yard) and she loves sniffing Sierra when Sierra sat on the other side sniffing her.

She doesn’t mind little kittens sleeping all over her, but she minds if I try to check on her stitches.

That’s not fair.

But then again, her life has been Halloween half the way, and she has just started on the Christmas way, so, she is taking each day, and maybe one day we’ll be Saturday night.

~ Josie

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Josie And The Whiskers' Syndicate

The first and only cat refuge in Bandung (West Java - Indonesia) a capital breeder of a nation without animal welfare law. We care for Bandung's unwanted animals, operate a TNR as much as our budget allows, and continue to educate people about compassion to animals

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