This is almost an unknown anymore. No one wants to need anyone or anything. Self-sufficient, self-reliant. No one needs anything or anyone.
Until we do.
I know next to nothing about cats. I have never shared my home or my life with one, nor have I ever developed a long-term relationship with one. I had seen a grey tabby wandering our neighborhood street once or twice and though most of my neighbors have dogs there could be someone nearby with a cat.
exemplary photo, not my picture
I know that cats are reputed to be aloof, independent. The very few encounters I have ever had were mostly friends who had cats that would deign to allow me to pet them, or not, and a lovely white cat, one blue eye and one green eye, who paid an occasional visit when I lived in a small condo years ago. Then one afternoon this same cat came running on its hind legs frantic, clearly having recently given birth to a litter which I was never able to find.
The cat disappeared as mysteriously as it had appeared.
So this grey cat. When the dehumidifier was going in the crawlspace one of the guys installing it came out and asked if I had a grey cat. I replied I did not (rescue dogs Lily and Lulu I am sure would not permit this), but I had recently seen one in the neighborhood.
Loropetalum, a favorite landscaper’s shrub, in full bloom now
Well, it’s in your crawlspace.
Not fully understanding whether I was now meant to go in there and flush the cat out or this was simply information being conveyed, I was relieved to learn it was the latter when he continued, “We got out of its way and it ran out.”
So the installation was completed and they left, promising to return at a later time to finish attaching the door frame, assuring me the crawlspace door was tightly secured.
premature coreopsis bloom
That night I was awakened around 2 by a plaintive, faint “meow”. I guessed the cat was passing by and talked to itself.
The next night my son who was visiting for the weekend heard it, too.
Again Monday night I heard this, persistent now. I decided this cat had maybe had a litter that the installers somehow did not see and it was trying to get back inside. So I went outside and walked clear around and found nothing.
Gaillardia (blanket flower) setting buds
An hour or so later I heard soft thudding noises from under the house. Clearly somehow this cat had got back in unnoticed while the installation was going on and was trying to get out. In the light of morning I unscrewed the door and cracked it open, leaving it that way for about 30-40 minutes. Then closed it. I did not hear any more cat.
I called the people who’d installed this thing and explained about the cat. I spoke with the lady that scheduled jobs and she clearly had heard nothing about a cat but assured me she would send the person out who was to finish the door. He came in and inspected everywhere finding the cat had shredded the sealants (thudding noises I’d heard) that had been installed to close the vents so he had to replace those as well.
Clematis vine with early buds
So this cat, feral, wild and free, absolutely needed help when it found itself trapped under my house, which I happily gave it.
I guess we all need a hand now and then, even from a perceived enemy.
Lily sleeping peacefully, no cats to ward off
Lulu sleeping happily, cat-free environment