Last month, as we were in the midst of FU February, Rich promised me a new kitty. I squealed continuously for several minutes and hopped all around his office. KITTY! Little puffball of mew mew mew! With the feather chasing and string attacking! Kitty! I decided we should get a little kitten because Rich had never experienced that. He had never seen Isis when she was that small. Emily was the mother of the kittens I had intended to adopt so she certainly wasn't tiny. And Tobias inserted himself into our lives at a year old the way he inserts himself into the lap of houseguests. It has been a long time since we've had a kitten.
There aren't a lot of kittens that show up on the SPCA site, but there are tons of cats. I was determined to stand my ground, though. We were getting a tiny puffball of mew, dammit.
We went to the SPCA yesterday to look around. There was a lovely orange tabby but I learned that the orange dot on their sheet means they're "sassy" and probably not a good fit for small kids. Mr. orange tabby scratched me while we were playing and I don't need my kid getting scratched. There was a large black cat named Robin but it was hard to tell his personality since he had been handled by a million children that afternoon and was worn out. His personality appeared to be "exhausted".
But I found myself thinking about this big black cat once we got home. The woman in charge said he was very sweet. I went back and looked him up online, realizing I was doing that thing you do when meet someone and then stalk them on Facebook.
So after lunch today I decided I would just stop by to look at him one more time. I wanted to see how he was without the hubbub of a busy Sunday and without my own busy kid quizzing me on which cat we were taking home right now. I walked into his "colony" (these glassed-in rooms where they put several cats) and sat down on the floor. He came over and made himself at home in my lap.
It was then I started to get an idea for just how huge he was, approximately the size of a small pony. He was so friendly. I talked with the worker at the SPCA and she gave me his back story. He was adopted as a kitten but was returned when his owner deployed. Then he was adopted again at the beginning of the year but that woman returned him saying he was too "intimidating" for her. That kind of gives you an idea of his size. She claims that he bit her but later admitted that it didn't break the skin and it was only when she was trying to brush the base of his tail. So basically she was alarmed that he was acting like a typical cat and returned him. Poor guy is only two years old and is looking for his third home.
I was pretty sure I wanted this feline pony to be ours. But I wanted to walk around a bit and be sure. There was a tiny little 12 week old kitten named Gingersnap and I decided to visit with her a bit. She was super cute and did all those things I said I wanted. She played with feathers and string, ran around all crazy, weighed nothing at all, and made those precious "mew" noises tiny cats make. I should have been in love. But I just kept thinking about that gentle giant in the other room.
I put the kitten back and went back to check on him. There was another woman in the colony with her kids looking for a cat. She said that she wanted a cat to get along with her kids and her three dogs. She kept trying to coax "Robin" out of the cat condo but he wouldn't budge. One should note, he is not a cat that you can easily move if he is uninterested in being moved. I was standing there, ostensibly looking at another cat in the room but feeling this urge to tell her, "THAT'S MY CAT!" That was my clue that I should just go fill out the paperwork if I was going to be jealous of someone else paying attention to him.
In another 30 minutes he was mine. I'm glad I brought the largest of our cat carriers because it was a tight squeeze. I had to support it from underneath because I didn't really trust the handle to stay attached. We went through a ton of possible names. Magnus, Quintus, Bruce (Wayne or Campbell), Fezzik (anybody want a peanut?), and Rich's favorite Hedley LaMurr. But Ian wanted to name him Hiro.
We discovered that Hiro means "abundant" and "patient" and "generous" in Japanese. That sounds like our cat. It's also the very long black train in Thomas the Tank Engine. So Hiro it is. Tobias is being a bit of a kitty butthead right now, but that's to be expected. The dogs are insatiably curious about this new creature in the house, but we're keeping Hiro separated for now. I've typed half this entry with only one hand as our new cat has been lounging all over the other one. If we were Nascar fans we could have named him Dale and called him "the Intimidator" but it didn't seem very fitting.