Saturday, March 04, 2006

A Quiet Hero:

unpretentious; more "heart" than most; pushes forward in spite of limitations - health or financial; goes beyond the extra mile - my friend, Lil.

The cat in the window watched its keeper open the door. Stepping inside my eyes popped. The homeowner noticed and laughed. “I have twenty-nine of them.” We have two. Twenty-nine I couldn’t imagine. They were everywhere, high and low. I chuckled at the longhaired white cat stretched out on her back on the kitchen table.

The moment Lil sat down one hopped on her lap for a pet. Another hopped on mine she tried to shoo off, but animals know I like them. Petting him soothed my longing for our pets back home. I smiled. He purred.

“How did you get so many?”
"People just drop them off. Each one has a story. This one (black and in her lap) was shot in Houston. He still has a bullet in his spine. Doc said he can't operate; it's too close to a nerve.” He jumped down satisfied. She smiled ready to welcome another. I imagined an invisible neon sign with a flashing arrow pointing down: homeless cats - stop here for food, shelter, and love.

Lil is a former Humane Society board member. But for her, they'd all be deceased. Her doctor said caring for them keeps her going. "Some of them sleep with me. I live alone."
"No you don't," I exclaimed. We both laughed.

"Do you have help with their maintenance?”
“Not really. I use coupons when I can. Basically, it comes out of my pocket. I have them neutered and spayed too."

Patron saint of the animals, Saint Frances of Assisi is remembered for his love and service to animals. I see the likes of him in Lil. God bless her.

copyright 2006 Red Convertible Travel Series

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