Gracie is a beautiful multi-colored long-haired cat who would have a story to tell if only she could talk. Of course, this applies to all animals, and the only way we know about their lives is to pay close attention to them. In the case of Gracie, I think I've pieced together enough of her life, which I can share with anyone who either loves cats or all animals.
Since I brought her into my warm, partially-finished basement in the winter of 2000, she has seemed happy and content. She must have been born in 1998 or 1999. If so, she is close to 15 years old now, and definitely over 13.
In one of those two early years I had seen her sitting on the window sill of my next-door neighbor who rented the front section of the house. She looked so beautiful and regal - like a porcelain statue -so that when she finally came to live with us, I dubbed her Grace. Later Gracie seemed to fit better.
Gracie would have been happy I'm sure to live with her owner, but obviously he was experiencing financial difficulties. One day I saw his belongings on the front lawn because he had been evicted. Was Gracie among those castaways? Sadly, yes, though she was nowhere to be seen. I hope he had regrets in doing this to her, but that didn't make her situation any easier.
I don't remember how long she was out there, but she did suffer at least one cold winter without appropriate shelter, and she was a very delicate cat.
When I spotted her one day, I picked her up and we headed to the shelter of my basement where there were at least 5 other rescued cats. What happened next was in no way predictable, even though I knew poor Pippi was basically an unhappy and disgruntled cat. When I set Gracie down, Pippi let out a bangee scream that frightened the daylights out of Gracie as well as the rest of us. Obviously, Pippi didn't want to share her living quarters with yet another cat.
Seeing her fear, I followed her mad dash up the stairs and away from the frightening cat. I opened the door to the outside and she gladly disappeared into my cold backyard. I guess she thought anything would be better than living with Pippi, that inhospitable cat.
Really, Pippi wasn't that bad, and her response to Gracie threw me off-guard. It would be sometime later when I tried again to bring Gracie indoors, and this time, there was no incidents. Gracie would never again have to face the rigors of a cold Ohio winter, unsheltered and unfed.