There is yet another cat, thrusting between him and the last of tuna by products on the plate: the fins, the gills, the galls.

Soon the roof above him will be lifted, and he will see the sky. He peers in a glint of worry as the man whose feet have become a familiar rubbing post for him arose and go around.

It’s about time. He always goes home at about this time. Lifting one bucket after another, piling it up tidily in the corner; finally, folding the new tarp given by a woman who came twice a week.

She doesn’t know him, he always run away; but this time he is too hungry and sick, this time, he doesn’t care.

Like many other she will just squeal and lift their legs, and then give him a push away.

Like many times he will just move away and wait patiently for others to finish the meal, his meal, that the tuna seller gave him with a little smile whenever nobody is looking, or women crowding him, bidding for whatever is left in his bucket.

Like no other he will not fight. He cannot hear them coming, although he can see all the blows coming; except when it comes from his back.

Like other people no one would have cared. They have their own world, he has his; where silence fills the day and peace fills his sleep.

He should be busy, come to think of it, he thought too much of everything that he didn’t see that yet another just land a slap on his sore cheek so they can have the last share of what should be his meal.

But of course, he should probably be wondering of what that one last girl was doing. She was squatting and watching him, with mouth opened and closed alternately. He cannot hear her, he cannot understand her.

However he can understand that smile; with a long – but fat – strip of white and clean tuna meat waving on his eyes.

However he can understand her language, though he cannot understand still, when she took him out of under that makeshift shelter and hold him like a baby.

And another woman pat his head, asking questions, perhaps, if her eyes are not deceiving, toward which the girl who holds him would nod.

He cannot understand, still, why it doesn’t feel like clear and present danger when both women emptied a sack and push him in, and sling him to the back of one of them, while other ride them elsewhere.

There are many different things. Towels laying around, mother and babies, babies running, and teens, and young females. The kind he chased around at times, but these ones in that place are all clean, and heavy, and chubby.

There are many different things, like cold bath in a scorching noon, and more strips of tuna, and foreign smells in towels, of many colors. Many, like rainbow.

There are many different things, like balls and funky smelling toys that allure him to play, to jump, to run, to roll, and it’s never ending pleasure. While he struggles to no avail to fight it, the two women always laughed.

There are many different things. Crackers and kibbles, chicken, and beef, and eggs. Every day, different food, different smell, but tastes all good; that he will always run and skip and jump to welcome.

There are many different cats, but none slap him, none take his food, none picked a fight, all sleep in peace, though their world seems to be merrier with something different. Something not silence.

Although, there are also these painful shots on his back, sticks thin and thick, long and short, poking into his ears. There are also these stings that lingers several days on his bottom.

And there is different shadow, well – he thought it was himself, on the mirror. He is white and clean, his cheek no longer sore and swollen, he is handsome, and well built, and tall.

Still, there is silence. The white peace that comes with him and follow him, no matter how many shades are the places and things he now belongs.

Perhaps he cannot trade those silent days yet, maybe never; but for a spot under the sun and away from rain? He didn’t know what he did, and that day will long be gone soon.

He just know that if one of the women flick their fingers in front of his eyes, it means there are more different things, as merry as others.

And he is okay with that, so long as he keeps the hugs and cradles.

~ Josie




Published by

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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