I'm sitting here watching my silly cat while I wait for inspiration to strike. Then I realized that Mr. Tibbles is my inspiration for today's post.
I was reading a story about a special dog who was rescued from an animal shelter with a group of eighth graders. There were only four students in the class, so we had more time to discuss both the story and our own pet tales.
Each young lady told me about their pet and what made him or her so special. The common thread in all of our stories was that we had adopted our pets from a shelter.
I shared my adoption story with the class:
Mel, as he was previously named, was brought to a shelter one summer day. The woman dropping him off told the shelter worker that she had too many pets and needed to get rid of one. The shelter took him in and Mel was neutered, bathed and given his shots. A month later he was featured in the paper in the hopes of finding him a home.
Months went by and Mel stayed at the shelter. It seems kittens were more desirable than an adult male cat. The shelter worker had a soft spot for Mel. She would let him out of his cage for a little while each day and he would crawl around her desk, eventually curling up on her keyboard or on top of a pile of papers.
Mel's time at the shelter was running out. He had been there longer than any of the other cats. He was going to be put down in November if he was not adopted.
A few days before Halloween, my daughter and I went to the shelter to look at cats. I had halfway agreed that it was time to get a pet. My oldest son had left for college that fall, and we were all missing his presence. My son swears we got the cat to replace him ( I didn't.) It just seemed like a good distraction from the empty chair around the table.
So, my daughter and I went into the shelter to look around. She of course, ran straight to the cage of kittens. I had already decided I had no patience to train a kitten, so moved to the adult cat cages along the far wall.
It's so noisy in the shelter. The other room housed a dozen dogs, all of them barking furiously in an effort to be heard. The cats somehow sleep through this din, or placidly groom themselves. As I stood close to a cage looking at a white cat, I felt something touch my shoe. A white paw extended from the cage on the floor. It continued to pull on my shoelace until I crouched down to peer into the cage.
Two big green eyes stared back at me. As I look closer, a large gray and white cat poked his nose between the bars in an effort to rub against my outstretched hand.
Mel had chosen me, and in respect for his good taste and judgement, I agreed to take him home, but first I had to convince my daughter. She was still across the room completely enamored by the silly kittens.
I called her over and introduced her to Mel. He placed his paw on her shoe and rubbed his face against her hand. The delighted shelter worker took him out of the cage, and Mel wrapped himself around our legs, purring loudly. It was a unanimous decision. Mel had a home.
We decided was that his name had to better reflect his personality. Nole (after the FSU Seminoles), was a good start, but he needed something more, as befitting his title as "the most interesting cat in the world." He was then christened, Mr. Nole Tibbles.
Mr. Tibbles is a well known personality, both locally and throughout Xavier University. He has his very own Facebook page after my son's college roommates met Nole and thought he was a very cool cat. My kid's friends don't want to be buddies with someone's Mom,but find it perfectly acceptable to stay in touch with a cat!
I can hardly remember what our lives were like before he came to live with us, but I do know that he is a very important member of the family. Just ask him.
Causes Annette Talbert Supports
Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation, RIF (Reading is Fundamental),
Hands On Foundation, Dignity U Wear, Girls, Inc.