LT and Rudy sat up late into the night talking about their experiences here in Pottawatomie, Kansas. They’d come here looking for cats who were treated like royalty, like honored statesmen, but what they’d found was anything but that. Rudy’s experiences at the Pound today showed her that many of the cats here were worse off than cats they knew in New Jersey. The pure-breed cats at the fancy house were housed and fed well, but were only treated even decently if they won at their cat shows. The places they’d seen that they thought were special for cats turned out to be places for humans, and not cats at all. The town cats, well some were small minded and treated LT and Rudy badly, and the others were just regular everyday cats. The humans, well Lettie was a marvel, but she wasn’t from here. She just ended up here. That policeman today should be taken out back and shot. No one here seemed to think their cats had any special knowledge or qualities that would have them standing in line to spend time with them.
As they talked, they realized that although they had discussed their mission with most cats they’d met, they had never talked to Ginger about it. Rudy assumed LT had done it, and LT had just been having too much fun with Ginger and her grown kittens to think of bringing it up. She’d been living here for four years, and with all those active kittens she was bound to know the full scoop about what was going on around here. The two cats decided that there was no time like the present, and took off for Ginger’s house.
It was after midnight, and the streets were deserted. They made it to Ginger’s in a matter of minutes, and found Titus lounging on the lawn. He yodeled, “Monster Daddy!” and pounced on LT. LT just grinned, ruffled the fur on Titus’ head and told him to go get his mom. He ran inside to get her.
“Doesn’t that ever get old, LT?” Rudy was curious. Titus did that every time he saw LT, and they’d been there a number of times in the past ten days or so.
“Nope. It never gets old to be a beloved Daddy.” LT wore a very satisfied smile.
Ginger came bustling out of the house. “There’s no emergency, is there, LT? Everyone at home is okay?” LT reassured her and asked if they could talk to her about something important – the reason they had actually come to Kansas. When she agreed, LT and Rudy took turns talking about the stories they knew about Pottawatomie, and the stories the other cats had told. They said they’d come here hoping to find truth in those stories, but so far they hadn’t.
Ginger smiled sadly. “I came here with those same dreams and stories, LT. When my human told me we were moving here, I thought I was coming to paradise. Next to moving back down south, this was the best place I could ever be, or so I thought.” She shook her head. “I found the cats here to be just like the cats in New Jersey, or the cats down south where I was born. The people are the same, too. They talk a bit different, and a lot more of them like country music, but they are still the same kind of people.” Ginger moved over and started grooming LT’s ears.
Rudy looked sad and asked if she hadn’t found any special people or cats here in Pottawatomie. Ginger stopped grooming and said that of course she had, the same way she’d found a special person in New Jersey who hadn’t minded when she had her kittens in his closet. Those special people were just about everywhere in the world if you looked hard enough. Rudy smiled as Ginger said that, as it was her Daddy who had been that special person. He’d been quite accommodating when Ginger had decided to pop out her kittens in the closet while a storm raged outside.
LT looked up at Ginger, who was sitting upright looking off into the night sky. “Ginger, could you introduce us to some of those special people here? It would make our trip seem, well, less useless. More like we accomplished our purpose, even though it wasn’t the purpose we started out with.”
Ginger brought herself back into the present and gave LT and Rudy a big smile. “Of course, sugars. We’ll do that tomorrow. You two, me and Titus. Titus is a special friend of one of those people. You go home now and sleep, and don’t come back here until at least 10 am, you hear?” She gave them a look and made a shooing motion with her paws. “Get along home, you two.”
The roads were still silent as they made their way back to the Oregon Trail RV Park. They let themselves into the RV and settled themselves in for the night. Rudy checked on David before she went to sleep, finally deciding to sleep on the bed with him. He’d gone above and beyond the role of cat-friend today. Rudy wanted him to know how much she appreciated that. As she walked across the covers, a sleepy David reached out an arm and rubbed Rudy’s ears. “I’m glad you’re here Rudy. You’ve made this trip really special for me. G’nite.” Rudy settled down next to him and thought that, yes, there were special people right here in Pottawatomie.
Photo courtesy of Dotpolka - http://www.flickr.com/photos/dotpolka/3221745798