Meet Ginger Melon MP.
She came home in December 2009; she and her siblings had been abandoned at two or three days old, on the side of a highway, in Mitchell’s Plain*, one of Cape Town’s largest suburbs. One Saturday morning, the Husband had gone into the local vet to collect something for another feline (more of her, another time) while Cat’s Mother sat in the car. When he came out, Cat’s Mother was bidden inside.
And there they were: an entire litter of the tiniest ginger kittens! An equal number of males and females and one of them, with the saddest little face. Vet Nurse had already called her “Melan” – short for melancholy. Cat’s Mother oohed and aahed, and notwithstanding Mrs Vet’s “We’re looking for homes for all of them. Wouldn’t you like one?” went home resolute. Another cat was not coming into the house until the old lady, Tasha (then fifteen), had gone to Kitty Heaven.
By the time the Husband and Cat’s Mother got home, the decision had been taken. The Old Lady was still spry enough to cope: she had managed to co-exist with Sir Galahad, aka Fat Cat or Mr G, for long enough. Melan would have a home. Mrs Vet was given the good news, and although visiting rights, were granted, there was a few weeks’ wait until Melan was able to come home.
The appointed day arrived. Melan was collected, complete with a starter pack and a very dirty little nose: she still couldn’t eat properly and would shove her entire face into the food bowl!
Because of the way our home in Cape Town was configured, the only room to which she could be confined, was the bedroom. Not wanting to keep the door closed all the time, the Husband made a barrier that fitted the door, and over which little mite was couldn’t jump.
Not so, Cat’s Mother, who in the middle of the night needed to go walkabout and safely scaled it on the way out. The way back was another story: bang, crash, wallop, she smashed straight through it and woke the entire household!
The gate was in smithereens, not to mention Cat’s Mother’s dignity…
Melon found her way around, quickly. First in the bedroom where, at night, she just had to sleep on Cat’s Mother’s head; she could not be budged. Too soon, she managed to find her way over said gate (repaired by long-suffering Husband), constantly popping up in the least expected places: A favourite spot was in our sunroom-cum-TV lounge, and where she insisted on perching (not entirely successfully) on top of the cushions: Next: Melon, the beauty queen…
*hence the “MP”
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