Tuesday, September 26, 2017

More than $60, less than $90

Last Friday, Napoleon the Cat and his humans were trying to get out of town. His dad, Caleb, is apprenticing a few days a week as a window washer in Indiana. Once he compiles the requisite hours, he will be able to work full-time and make a decent wage.

But they missed their ride and had to take the bus. They were working the corners, husband on one side of the street, wife and Napoleon on the other side, trying to raise the $90 they needed to get all three of them to Indiana, and a new life.

On Monday, I saw Napoleon and his mom and my heart sank. They didn't make it! I've been really rooting for this homeless couple. They live in a tent by the river, and share whatever resources they have with this kitten they rescued. Napoleon is growing like a week -- lanky and strong, like my Reynaldo. He's a completely average looking little tomcat, nothing special, but he is much loved by these two. And it shows in his friendly, trusting demeanor. This kitten has never known anything from humans than tenderness.

She explained that while they didn't raise the full $90 it would take for three seats on the bus -- Napoleon needs a ticket and a separate seat for his carrier -- they did come up with just over $60. That was enough for Caleb to get to Indiana and back when he's done with work.

She is sure that by next week, they'll have the $90. Then, once her husband in a regular job, they can move to a shelter that gives the the opportunity to bathe regularly. Once she's presentable, she'll take steps to become licensed to do hair in Indiana.

I will miss them, of course. But it will be good to know they're sleeping indoors when the midwestern winter comes.

And I am grateful to them. Knowing them has opened me up and enabled me to better see those I pass on the street every day.

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