Meow! That’s the only thing you hear from me. I have seen you wonder how I can speak using only one sound. Well, it seems quite an easy language with just one word in my dictionary. So you think my life is a bed of roses huh? Then let me tell you my story.
I am a cat and I was born right under your cot. No need to check now. It was long ago. Momma cat used to bring me food the first few weeks of my birth. That was indeed a golden time. We don’t have any formal names like you do. But momma called me ‘meoaw’ affectionately. I loved her very much.
Suddenly one day, ‘a black cat’ crossed my road. No, I am not being racist. I meant the black cat which you think is unfortunate. I woke up from my nap one afternoon and found my tummy rumbling. It was my lunch time and momma had not returned yet. “She must not have found something today and is still searching. Oh, poor momma!” I thought.
“She should give in for today. I can go without food for one day. I wish I could contact her.” I said to myself.
But we don’t have those cell phones you carry, on which you can talk to each other standing at any position on this planet. I decided to wait a little longer but could not find any sign of her. So I stepped out of my cocoon to begin my search and witness the world around on my own. I walked a few miles and then saw people gathered in the middle of the street. “Is there any festival going there?” I asked. I took a few steps further, trying to break through the fence of men. I tried to make my way through their legs when I heard someone saying, “Who is going to throw this cat carcass?”.
“What did she say? What is a carcass? But they mentioned the word cat” I said.
So out of anxiety I peeped through the legs of those men and got a glimpse of white fur. Moving my head further ahead I saw there,my mother lying on the road, almost smashed. I didn’t know what to do. I was completely numb. Someone picked her up by a tool and put her in a bag and walked ahead.
“What.. Where are you taking her? Meaaoow.. meaaooow.” I screamed running after the man. I don’t think anyone noticed because all they did was put her in a garbage van and take her somewhere. I don’t remember much of that now.
For the next few days, I was completely broken. I sat in the corner and wept, out of grief and hunger. We don’t have any funerals like you. Neither do we have Life Insurances stating if he/she dies you will get a free bowl of milk twice daily. She was my only family. Momma said my brothers and sisters had died at birth.
The worst thing was that she treated me like a baby and never taught me those skills of finding food and shelter. Those things which you call stealing and we call a way of living. We don’t have any choice. No one offers a job to a cat. Neither can I walk to Mac Donalds and order for a fish burger with extra cheese.
My life began a new journey in which I was completely abandoned. I realized I have to set out in it and have to survive somehow. I walked around the neighbourhood in search of my other cat companions. But I guess I was not good at making friends because none of them wanted to help me. Cats don’t travel in packs and so I had to find food on my own. I went to the house in which I was born hoping that they might be sympathetic enough. Although I tried to convince them, they denied the fact, as I didn’t have a birth certificate. I sat on the floor when they were having their dinner begging them to give me at least a small piece. They turned a deaf ear to all my whining. Later, when they were making their beds, I managed a small corner on it for myself. I dozed off making myself comfortable. We cats seem to be very lazy. I spend almost 2/3 of the day taking naps. The girl by me also soon fell asleep. Suddenly I heard a shriek, ”aaaaaaaaaa…..” . It was so loud I thought my ears would bleed. Everybody came running in. She pointed at me and screamed as if I was a monster trying to eat her. She ordered me to be thrown away. They scolded me and told me to leave at their highest pitch. I said , “No need to be so loud. I can hear a lot better than you deaf morons… huh!”
There I was, once again homeless and hungry. I saw some dogs by the side of the drain chewing something. I went towards them hoping to get a share. But who was I kidding? They growled and ran after me like hooligans. I ran and ran till I could see no sign of them. Fortunately,I am good at this and can break even ‘ Bolt’s’ record.
One day when I was peacefully laying on the sand taking my usual nap, some rowdy school kids encircled me and threw stones at me. One hit me right in the eye. I ran here and there but couldn’t make a way out. Then god sent a brother of my species for my rescue. He distracted those kids and then we both made a narrow escape and ran away.
We spent some good times together. One day when we were playing, we saw a beautifully dressed kitten cuddling in its master’s lap. She was looking at us with pride in her eyes. My mate said,” Damn those wealthy pets. They are so lucky and they treat us like we are nothing. I bet they cannot survive even one day if they are set free in the real world.”
One day I met a sweet little girl who treated me affectionately and brushed my fur with her hand. Then her evil mother came and scolded her badly. She ordered her to put me back. But she pleaded,” But mom it’s so cute.”
“Just do what I say. It’s so dirty. You’ll get infection.”, said her mother.
“Hey! I’m not dirty at all. I lick my body every day”, I said.
“Don’t be upset buddy. These humans are like that only.”, my friend consoled me when I told him the story.
I told him “I wish we were born in Egypt.”
“Why?”, he asked.
“You know in ancient Egypt these humans used to worship us because we kept mice away. At least someone did understand our value.”
I also experience similar emotions like you. Well, most of them. I too couldn’t escape the cupid’s attack on me. I’ve never seen a more beautiful kitty like her. So I summed up all my courage and charm and walked towards her. I could say by the look in her eyes that she got a bit nervous. I think she was from the other neighbourhood.
“Meaow”, I said.
“Meow”, she replied. And thus how our hearts got connected and we fell in love with each other. I still remember that day.
She used to get fish for me. I escorted her most of the times in her mission to get food and we would run together on being chased after. The one good thing about us is that we aren’t sent to prison for stealing. But sometimes we get beaten badly and those humans never seem to understand that we also have senses. One day, I wish to take my revenge on all these living beings, bigger and stronger than me. I wish I could grow into a tiger, to which I am often related to. Then I could scare the hell out of all these, especially humans and dogs.
My so called wife and I had some lovely times together. But betrayal and misfortune were what I was born with. She betrayed me and left me one day. I still don’t know where she went or if anything happened to her. You know, in our cases it’s quite simple to fall in love and then break up and all. There are no formalities, marriage or divorce which is good in one way but turned out to be bad for me. But I got over her quickly.
At least I had my friend with me. But wait, as I had said, I’m the storehouse of bad luck. My friend got a terrible disease. I don’t know what it is. But he suffered a lot. Then one day the municipality came and took him in a van. I thought they were going to dump him somewhere like they did to my mother. But I heard them saying they were taking him to the hospital.” Now, what’s that? “, I thought. Well, I still don’t know where he is. I just hope he’s alive. But in my life I have learnt one thing very well. You lose someone and in the case of poor animals like us, it is quite often, the pain lingers only for a limited time. Slowly you start to forget. I think it’s in the case of humans too. But frankly, I have no interest in humans. I just hate those creatures. Except that, we manage to get our daily bread from them somehow.
Did I tell you about my relationship with mice. Well, a cat’ story is incomplete without a mouse. After all, we are so ‘good friends’. I am a big fan of ‘Tom’. You don’t know? The “Tom and Jerry’s” Tom. Oh, I just love that show. i had seen it only once . I honestly don’t trouble the mice much, except that if one of those nasty, little things comes in front of me, then it’s his last day. The one good thing is that the real mice are not as smart as ‘jerry’. I don’t like the fact that they show Jerry smarter than Tom. But yeah, after all, it’s created by you humans and you won’t leave a single chance to make us down.
Humans don’t really understand us. All they can do is perform some experiments and study us. Luckily, cats are not used much for your stupid deadly experiments. I’m not supposed to say further bad things about you. Then you’ll start hating me. I’m just presenting the truth. Like, I have heard from my friends about animal cruelty. One fellow from our species was bitten so badly that his body bled and he was blinded by some psychic drunkard. He was kept hungry for many days and the tied to a rope and hung. When finally it couldn’t take more and breathed it last, it was dumped into some roadside garbage van. I felt really bad for it. But this is how we are born. The differences, the inequality, everything we have to deal with. And there’s no one to protest for us. This is my life and I have accepted, like the others of my kind did.
One day I dreamt that the world has gone topsy- turvy. Humans turned to mere creatures and cats ruling. We would have managed the world better than you and would have definitely kept the earth clean and green. I dreamt that I am the king and the humans are my pets. We are treating humans the same way they treat us. Like the saying- “an eye for an eye” and “ what you give is what you get.” But such cloud nine experiences can happen only in dreams. But if I could ever direct a movie, I would have portrayed my dream.
You must be wondering where I am at present. I am staying at a house until they drive me away. I mean, I go there for my meals and at bedtime. They are quite nice people and they serve me all their leftovers. But as it is said, “nothing’s forever” and I know that very well. So soon I might have to change my address. And look out, my next stop might be your house.