For days and weeks now, we marvel over Pippa. How she finds an empty space somewhere in our overcrowded house to stretch, or sneaks out into the porch and sleeps, tummy toward the air. How she took it easy and climb the stairs back and forth even with her heavy pregnant belly.
We marvel first, of course, about how she always finds a perfect roadside strip, and sits like a Sphinx so tidily upon it, waiting for us, one a.m. in the wee hours of the day. How a cat can fluidly adapt into such wilderness, right after she was ripped off her home and thrown away in that abandoned park when Covid began. How she kept herself clean, how she brought about herself still gracefully, as if she is still a house cat. How she managed to walk from one hidden end to the other, avoiding mean park squatters and dogs, until she found us and made that same journey for a packet of steamed tuna or soft, watery wet food she must have missed so much.
The dogs. There are three of them, belonging to a house at the other side of the park. They are fed, but kept hungry enough to keep some extent of their fierceness, and especially so as a pack. Every night their owner will crack open their fence and let the three roam around free on an emptying road.
For most of the time they are just running after each other; round and round the park. At other time they found scraps of food left by people sneaking into the park to have some quiet space, or to rest from their homeless journey. If they think they aren’t that lucky, they will be robbing tiny bits of food from stray cats by ganging against them and sometimes made them wounded.
At special ocassions, they will find delicacies, just like when they found Pippa, tired and weakened after labor, and ate her newborn babies.
So outrageous it was that we couldn’t believe our ears when one food stall owner told what he saw, but many others, like this man said the same story. These people are afraid of those big dogs, so they went and tell their owner what happened, with their complaint and abhorrence falling into the deep crevasse of ignorance.
Not us. We took it personally and stand guard on the cats whenever we come and feed them, even if we ended up spending the whole night at that cold, dark, windy park. We chase them away even when those dogs think they can trick us by spreading around and attack from three different direction. We’d stand our ground even when they surround us, howling and barking like rabid dogs. We’d let them think they can outsmart us when one of them tried to distract us while the other tried to steal the food or even bite the cowering cats under our feet.
They never knew the sting of a balloon filled with ice water until they met us.
It really not that fierce at the beginning because we always bring extra food for the dogs. We always prefer kindness, peace. We always choose love; but once the owner saw us feed their dogs, they either feed them less, or stopped feeding them all together, and things went out of hand in no time.
An animal is an animal, but so do we.
It’s just that we still choose love, if all else failed.
When Pippa was too slow and heavy to run, we brought our cargo carrier with us, and Pippa came home.
It’s a different home. It’s much more crowded. There’s much less space. There’s much more noise, a lot of kittens running, and food is always shared.
But just like the first time she made us marvel at her intelligence and grace, she fits herself right in and always found a cranny where she can find her own zen.
We were worried that she would run away or go somewhere else when she burst out of the door one sunny afternoon; but looking around and sat quietly upon the town from the tip of our fence, she knows that she has a second chance, and her babies will be born to see life.
She knows she is home.
Pippa is one of many benefiting from the pack of food we took around town every night. She is safe now, but there are more like her still in the parks, closed markets, landfills, and parking lots. For every two cans of cat food we raise with your help, a kind sponsor will donate one can to help more cats.
We won the game for Pippa. Help us win the game for more:
https://paypal.me/whiskerssyndicate or paypal email: firstname.lastname@example.org