It could just have been any weekday… One of those days where you come home late, do the groceries and start preparing dinner. Maybe it was a Tuesday? Or maybe a Wednesday? I actually don't quite remember it. Nevertheless, it quickly turned out that this was not going to continue being just any weekday.
This was going to be the day where our family expanded with a +1, and we adopted the cutest little cat from the streets of Buenos Aires.
Keep on reading to get the whole story!
It was in the beginning of December, and the nights were getting warmer here in Buenos Aires. I was heading home after buying the groceries. As I approached the entrance of our building block here in the Villa Urquiza neighborhood of Buenos Aires, I saw two of our neighbors standing outside on the pavement.
It is odd for our neighbors to hang out together. They don't really get along. From time to time, I chat with one of them when she takes her big white cat for walks in the patio of the building. Otherwise, they keep for themselves. This night something was up.
As I approached them, I could see that they were looking at a small white and brownish cat. I smiled at the owner of the white cat and asked whether she had bought another cat. I just meant to be chatty and nice, but she looked worried at me and answered “No, no, this one isn’t mine. It seems lost, and has been meowing on the street for awhile now”.
They had tried to give the cat some food and a little bed there on the pavement, thus, it seemed more interested in getting petted. Since I have a very BIG heart for cats, I couldn’t just pass by like nothing. I stopped and petted the cat, forgetting everything about groceries and dinner.
It was an elegant long-haired fluffy white and brownish female cat with small black spots painted all around her. Most characteristically with a big black spot just on her nose, and with the most beautiful light blue eyes.
Did we choose her – or did she choose us?
In the same instant, my boyfriend came out of the front door and looked a bit confused about three women standing and looking at a cat. I told him that the neighbors had said that the cat had been on the pavement for a while without leaving but as well without really wanting to enter the front door. I took off my things and got ready to leave to go inside but my boyfriend stopped me and looked seriously at me.
“Take the cat with you”, he said.
I looked puzzled at him. “Noo, we can’t what will the dogs say?”, I asked him worried. He has two small dogs that live with us. “We will see”, he said and laughed.
“See, the cat is leaving now when you are leaving”, he said, while we stood in the opening of the front door. And he was right, the small fluffy white-ish cat was walking slowly away. I couldn’t bear to think of where she might end up. It was clear that she hadn’t eaten well for days, she was dirty and was requesting so much love and petting.
“It is karma, the cat is meant for you. Take her with you!” My boyfriend looked insisting at me. And well, you can’t discuss karma with a Buddhist, can you?
I approached the neighbors again, and said: “We will take care of her until you find the owner”. They looked surprised at me.
“With the dogs?” One of them asked. “Yes, yes, we will see how it goes. They normally don’t fight the cats in the street”, I answered them. My boyfriend was just behind me, and add: “Rather that we have this beautiful cat and take care of her than she runs out, and some psychopath finds her”.
I took the cat up in my arms and went inside. She was clearly okay with being taking up but freaked out about the elevator door, so I walked up the stairs with her to our apartment. I took her to the terrace, where she hid behind our huge lemon tree.
The neighbors agreed that they would post on Facebook and go to the Police to ask if somebody had reported their cat missing. But nobody called. Nobody answered on Facebook. Nothing.
Part of the family
The cat has stayed on our terrace ever since. I named her Gata, which is kind of strange name for a cat in a Spanish-speaking country since it just means “female cat”. But in Danish (and in English for that sake) it doesn’t really have a meaning, and she was just my Gata from the beginning.
She is super talkative and wants to take part in all kind of activities I do. From hanging cloth for drying to watering plants – and it is even better if I can include a huge amount of petting her in these activities.
Her favorite spots are on a chair with my old pillow or under the lemon tree (as in the pictures). She has a food and fresh water on the parrilla (e.g. Argentine-style barbeque) which we anyway never use. Or she sits on the staircase overlooking the living room. And lately, she has been coming down lying next to me when I write as an assistant writer on the blog!
I took her to the vet to get her checked and get the necesary vaccines. She is healthly but needs a properly cleaning of her teeths.
She never seems to go any further than the roof of our building. Even though she has had all the opportunities in the world to leave, she has chosen to stay with us. Yes, Gata is doing good – and she gets on okay with the dogs. I believe she told them that they are stupid, and she is the big master as cats tend to do 😉
So, this is the story of how we adopted a street cat and my family expansion of +1 happened on a normal weekday. We don’t know where she came from. We will properly never know, but now she is part of our house.