I watched ‘The Deep’ in a morose ‘when-I-watched-this-last-week-my-cat-was-here’ kind of way. When out of the blue I announced I was going for a walk to find her. Bearing in mind we'd already done this Saturday evening, early Sunday morning and the grumpy old man has since worn a furrow in the footpath with how many times he's walked round asking people if they've seen her.
We went down Bridge Street [it's a long way round yet] passing three cats on our way to the recreation ground. As soon as we got there I started whistling and shouting her name ... oooh, I was sure I could hear something on Heanor Haulage land.
We went round the corner toward the bridge still shouting and listening [between the trains - they were exceptionally loud that night], but I could no longer hear anything. Hmm, so that means she wasn't in one of the Asda containers.
The grumpy old man couldn't hear anything at all, was I going doolally? ‘Are you wearing your hearing aid?’ ... ‘No’ ... ‘Well we'll go back for it then, I need you to hear it too’.
Back home we went, there was a definite spring in my step now. The conversation on the way: ‘Are you sure it was her?’ ... ‘No, but it was definitely a cat in distress and why would it meow every time I shouted? It must be her’ ... ‘What shall we do if you're sure it's her?’ ... ‘Ask again tomorrow if we can go on HH land.’
We set off again, one of us armed with better hearing, I was striding out and the GOM was sort of lagging behind. By the time we got there, the GOM realised that we could have gone in the car - what was I thinking? He was exhausted, he's no spring chicken and he'd already covered miles [albeit the same few miles] looking for her.
He heard her before we even had chance to shout her name. That was it, we were both convinced - she was there.
Now, we just happened to know where there was a sneaky way onto HH land [having observed a bit of activity last weekend]. We went to check out this hole in the fence and before I knew where I was, I'd had one of my little ‘moments’ and was to be found tiptoeing across HH yard, leaving the GOM at the fence telling my rear quarters that I could be in trouble if I got caught … I was of course, wearing my ultra-bright-ideal-for-breaking-in-and-trespassing-cream-fleece.
I negotiated around the crane bits and across to the shunter ... whistled, shouted [whispered], no not here ... I made my way to the big green thing aka the old boiler, no not here ... off to the big red thing aka the diesel tank. Oh, I can hear her back toward the fence.
There was a HH trailer covered in tarpaulin, I whispered ‘Tia, are you in there?’ ... ‘Meow!!’
I pulled at the tarpaulin, and got it up far enough to see two huge eyes and her blue daisy collar in the torchlight. Bugger it! If there had been HH's old lights the next bit would have been easy [having since seen the photos of the trailer]. As it was I was practically working in the dark - the torch I was using was next to useless - and I couldn't find how to loosen the cover. I ended up struggling to hold it up with one hand and dragging the cat out with the other.
She started purring, even though I'd nearly dislocated all her joints pulling her out, she was a bag of bones, never very heavy at any time. As my neighbour has often put it 'Tia eats to live', where her cats 'live to eat'.
I made my way back along the crane parts, I shouted [in a loud whisper] to the GOM to tell him to shout back to direct me as I couldn't find where I needed to be ... oh a bit further yet ... and a bit more ... oh heck, a bit more ... then I turned to the fence stepping over and around scrap.
I reached the hole in pitch dark where I'd left poor old grumpy worrying. ‘You've never got her’ ... ‘I have’. He took her from me while I had an argument with the razor wire. It was just after this that the pain hit, I thought the top of my head was going to explode, I had to sit down, such was the pain. I think it must have been the build up of stress suddenly being released.
We made our way back home - again - it's a chuffing long way with a wriggly, purring cat, half of me wishes they'd hurry up with that ramp to the bridge [although doing the footpath is what scared her into hiding], the other half of me is dreading it being open for the dregs of Langley Mill to cause trouble again.
Half way up Bridge Street I could see my neighbour out with her torch, she was calling and listening at the storage containers just over from the ‘turnaround’ while it was quiet. She was delighted to see we'd got her back.
Tia was starving! I’ve never known her eat so much, there must have been water where she was as she didn’t want a drink. She smelt awful, a mixture of diesel and rubber, I helped her out by wiping her with damp kitchen towel, licking that muck off would have made her sick. I got no sleep that night, she was non-stop purring, washing, eating and then going to the loo - thank heaven for cat litter.
I'd just like to say that if we'd been allowed to go on HH land via Asda's bit, we'd have found her in minutes and although I've been somewhat scathing of HH [yes I have], we were always allowed to go and fetch her back by the gate man - this was whenever she threw a ‘why-did-you-abandon-me- [with the neighbour] -and-I'm-not-coming-back-so-there’ wobbly - he knew all the cats that routinely ‘hung out’ in the buildings and on the back yard. Hmm, I think I'd better apologise here to Mr HH for trespassing - and even though I'm not a rule breaker, I'd do it again if I had to.
I've just read and watched with horror that twat of a woman who deliberately put a cat into a wheelie bin, apparently - at the time of reading - this was not considered by the police to be a ‘criminal offence’, presumably leaving the RSPCA to foot the bill of any proceedings against her. I hope because of this couldn't care less attitude that there aren't a spate of copycat ‘non-criminal offences’ made toward cats or indeed any animals. At least my cat's imprisonment was not malicious.
Tia didn’t go out for three days ... Saturday morning, off she went ... tea-time, we're packed and waiting to take her to the seaside for some peace and quiet - like the good cat servants we are. ‘Lets take some Asda photos and look for her, I can't stand waiting here any longer’. Half way between the bridge and the recreation ground … ‘Meow!?! This little head pops out of a rusty old girder/pipe doo dah next to the fence on HH land. I just give in …
Grumpyoldken 36 -
3 months ago