As I browsed through those images from 11 years ago, it was as though nothing besides the quality of the image and the size of the cat had changed. Precious memories captured on a Nokie Xpress Music with it’s 2mp camera were now irreplaceable. The annoyed meow from my now 11 year old ginger snapped me out of my reverie as I scowled at him in reply. It was well past 1am in the morning and Bambi disliked the fact I was yet up and about. He is quite particular about time when it comes to being in bed. My mind drifted to the day I found him.
It was a terribly rainy day, a slight fever wrecked through my body as my feet dragged the rest of me to the bathroom. In the midst of freshening up, my ears picked up on a soft cry. I hurriedly completed the task at hand and rushed out to see a tiny kitten in the pouring rain on the roof on the house adjoining mine. To give you a better picture, I live in a compound that consists of the main bungalow with an outhouse that has been let out to tenants. My balcony overlooks the roof of the outhouse. Now the people living there have a small loft with a window that's a little higher than their roof which is also visible to me. It was at that spot i saw a small creature, shaking like a leaf in the pouring rain. I was enraged and marched over to the next house and asked for an explanation. The woman gave me a pathetic reply but allowed me to climb onto the loft and retrieve the kitten off the roof. She went on to tell me that the kitten had two siblings, one who was under the bed, another tossed into the next compound. By that time I was seething with rage as I decided to look for the others before she proceeded to do something idiotic again.
I found a little ginger under the bed, his brother in the roots of a mayflower tree and his sister on the roof. Using a bedsheet I swaddled the three of them and placed them in a basket. They were less than 20 days old and their eyes had just opened. My heart melted watching them slowly doze off. They were so tiny, soft and precious. While two of them found loving homes, the ginger I called Bambi made himself home with us.
As time went by he grew fast and turned into a loving foster cat dad. He loved and yet loves to care for baby kittens who have lived with us for brief periods of time.However, being pulled away from his mother at a few days old affected his health badly. The first two years consisted of him falling terribly unwell. He had a sever food allergy that would lead to excessive internal bleeding.It was so hard watching him struggle and fight for his life till the time he turned 3.
Bambi has been with me for 11 years now. We are like two peas in a pod. It's a special bond that consists of us being able to read each others mind, knowing what the other wants and knowing how to act when. He loves to snuggle up to me when I'm upset, is sure to make sure I sleep on time and loves his Sunday bellota treat. When that time of the month hits me, he's my hot water bottle. Watching him grow was fun with a dash of hilarious moments. He was the only cat who loved to play with water. My favourite memories are ones where he chose the water bowl as his place to nap in, the day he fell into a gutter and was a sight as he jauntered into the house covered in filth and coming home to find his on a date with a random feline on our sofa!
People often say that cats are crude. However, I beg to differ. The last 11 years have been filled with nothing but sweet memories and loads of cuddles. Although he can be quite demanding, the love has not diminished. His habits consists of eating and sleeping. He's taught me nothing but love and more love.