Well. I might as well let the cat out of the bag.
Tomorrow is a big day for me. It's a Tuesday, for one thing - the Tuesday in a pay-week, so hey! I'm that much closer to briefly staunching the flow of cash from my chequing account. And I was born on a Tuesday, so yeah, that's gotta count for something, right? And if I get through tomorrow unscathed, that will bring my tally up to three accident-free days at the library, so yay me.
But. More importantly, if all goes according to plan, it will be the day I rejoin the ranks of the cat-owned, and I will welcome two - two! - kittens to my humble apartment.
I have been cat-deprived for far too long. I grew up with cats: my Charlie lived to be 21. My roommate in Montreal had a cat. When I moved back in with my parents, I had Smudge to keep me company. But my move to Toronto in May 2000 heralded an unprecedented - and very lonely - cat-free streak.
First there was the dippy roommate who didn't like cats because "I don't know what they're thinking". Well, I do: they're plotting world domination - everybody knows that!
Then there was the hysterical, control-freak landlady who told me I couldn't have cats because she was allergic to them and even though I would be living far away from her in the basement of her house, the dander would circulate through the house and she and her precious-wescious over-priveleged teenagers would suffer.
My Smudge, who lived with my parents during this time, died in May 2004, and Phil's Kitty, whom I loved as though she were mine, died of kidney failure right before Christmas. I knew that as soon as I could, I would adopt a cat or cats. Not to replace Smudge or Kitty, but because I love cats and I have almost always had cats and people are starting to look at me funny because if I see a cat on the street, I stop and say, "Hello Cat!" and talk to it and pet it and rub it under the chin and try to convince myself that it must be lost and in need of a good home, even if it's roly-poly from overfeeding and sporting a collar complete with engraved I.D tag.
So yes. A cat - or two - is in order.
And finally, I am in my own place, and the guy down the hall from me has a dog and the lady downstairs from me has a cat, and nobody is complaining, so gosh-darn-it, I'm going to have pets too!
I did think about getting a dog. I love dogs - I think they're marvellous. Wonderful pets. I was really tempted for awhile, to adopt a dog. But I knew in my heart that this would be the wrong pet for me. I am away for several hours every day because of my job, and dogs don't like to be left alone for long periods of time. They get depressed, and a depressed dog manifests its unhappiness by being destructive, and by barking and whining and pacing. It wouldn't be fair to my neighbours, and it would certainly be unfair to the dog. So, until I have a job closer to where I live, no dogs for me.
Cats need people too, but they can manage all right on their own during the day - after all, they spend most of the day asleep (what a life!). I decided a while back that if I adopted kittens, I would adopt two. I'm afraid one kitten would be lonely during that time, especially right after being separated from Mummy. At least two kittens can keep each other company while I'm at work.
I wasn't set on adopting kittens - I just wanted a cat or two. There are hundreds of cats in this city who need homes, it's not like there's a cat shortage. I visited the Humane Society and Toronto Animal Services web pages, which are updated every day, to look at pictures of cats. And I wanted all of them. I wanted the orange ones and the striped ones and the black and white ones and the kittens and the geriatrics and the ones who had been displaced because of an impending baby (so cruel, and usually, so unnecessary) and the ones who had been displaced because of a move or because of allergies.
But the blogs won. When Tanya blogged about her cousin's kittens, I just couldn't resist.
So tomorrow, after work, after what will probably be an extraordinarily long day, I'm going to make the long trek down to Leslieville to meet Tanya, at long last, and to pick up my two little kitty-cuties. I'm not even sure of what I'm getting, which makes it even more exciting. I think one of my babies is male, grey stripes, and the other one is TBA, black and white.
I have premium kitten food (only the best for my cats! they're going to eat better than I do), and there's a litter box in my art-deco bathroom, filled with all-natural wheat litter (better for kitties and better for the environment) . There are toy mice and a jingle ball in a cupboard, waiting to be taken out and played with. There are armchairs to be clawed until I acquire a scratching post, and there's a big south-facing window to sit in (as soon as I move my glass collection to the top of the kitchen cabinets). There will be baskets to sleep in, there will be sunbeams on most days, there is a balcony to bask on and pigeons to watch, there is a vet down the road.
Apartment 606 will never be the same, and I could not be happier.