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All I have to do in the morning is put my hand out from underneath the covers and I know that immediately a furry body will be up next to my chest looking for a head rub. Of course, I can’t not rub the soft silky fur of Miss Molly. If my hand just hovers, she will start to butt it with her head until she gets what she wants. Although she gives equal attention to both Kathy and me, I feel that she is my cat.
It is hard to believe that she has been with us seven years already.Molly was not a discussed and thought out addition to our family. In fact, we really had no intention of getting another cat. We had Ben and Archie and felt two cats were enough.
Molly had other ideas. It was the third week of August and I was asked to be a mentor to a new teacher in our Language Arts Department. We were to meet on new teacher induction day. All new teachers and mentors met in the board room to go over policies and discuss any district wide questions the new people had. We then broke for lunch, paid for by the district and association. Following lunch we returned to our respective buildings to go over building policies and familiarize the new people with the building, its rules, quirks, and general running.
It had started to drizzle as we left the restaurant. The temperature was a bit cool for August. I parked in the lot and walked to the entrance. As a walked toward the doors I heard a soft sound. It was so quiet that at first I thought I was hearing things. I heard it again and looked down. There huddled against the brick building trying to stay warm was a small gray fluff of a kitten. It couldn’t have been more than a few weeks old.
It was crying and shivering. I figured it was scared and lost. Since the school is situated out in the middle of a field I knew the kitten was just a stray. Several other teachers stood watching it not sure what we should do. Should we leave it? Should we pick it up and take it inside? Should we call someone? Who would we call.
We decided to let it alone and go report it to the office. This took all of about two minutes. As we told the story we know we couldn’t leave it, we didn’t know if it was male or female at that point. So we went back out. She was still there. Now the question became, who should pick her up?
I volunteered. The kitten was so small that she fit in the palm of my hand. As soon as I picked her up she started to purr. This could have been from pain or fear for all I knew but I chose to think of it as her (yes, change in pronoun. feeling safe and happy.
We had an empty copy paper box that we put her in while we decided what to do. Yes, I know we were there to help the new people get ready for their first year at UDAMS, but let’s face it…there were other priorities. Although everyone who saw her fell instantly in love with her, no one wanted a new kitten, including me. What to do. Put her back out in the cold drizzle? That wasn’t going to happen. Finally, I took out my phone and called Kathy. I told her the situation and asked her if she would like a new kitten. I knew the answer before I even called. Calling was just formality. She said bring her home. I admit that subconsciously I knew Molly (she was still unnamed at this point) would be part of our household as soon as I picked her up.
I took the box with Molly in it out to the car and drove home. She has been a loving and loved member of our household ever since. I kind of think that she knew it as well.