Hometown News For Orange County, Texas

Mother's Day Adventure

There is not much excitement when you reach 88 years of age. But this Mother’s Day was a little different.

Saturday morning I was awakened by my wife announcing that there appeared to be a cat stuck in our chimney in the living room fireplace. If you have never had a cat stuck in your chimney, you need to know that it presents quite a challenge.

A few years back our neighbor moved out and abandoned a herd of feral cats who immediately adopted us as their new homestead. Animal lover that I am, I managed to trap all the cats and have them neutered and have been putting food out for them for several years. Though moved emotionally by the sounds emanating from the rather tall chimney, we were dumbfounded about how we could go about extracting the cat from where she was trapped. Of course, a quick check of our computer and other sources did not reveal any specific service available, particularly on a holiday weekend which specialized in removing cats from chimneys. We did contact a chimney sweep who said he would come Sunday and help if we were not able to remove her before then.

Our house has a rather steep roof accompanied by an even taller chimney which made it virtually impossible to find implements to reach from the top down to seize the cat and lift her out. Therefore, we were left with the option of trying to see how we could extract the cat down into the fireplace. With the help from our daughter, daughter-in-law and grandson (involving a great deal of ingenuity) we were able to open the flus to their full extent and baited the cat with an open can of tuna fish placed in the fire place. To our delight, not long after the cat dropped out of the chimney into the fireplace and lodged herself behind the artificial logs. It was at this point we began to realize that perhaps the cat did not want to be rescued. When attempting to pick the cat up to remove her from the house, we were met with claws, screeching and bites. Even with the appropriate wrappings such as an old quilt or blanket we could not get the cat out to lift her from her position where she was lodged. Finally in frustration we closed the doors to the fireplace, gave up for the day and went to bed, hoping by morning we would come up with some solution.

In a way the adventure had a semi-happy ending. Sunday morning we awoke to find the cat sitting in the kitchen at the garbage bag. She had successfully pushed the fireplace doors open, made a “deposit” on the living room carpet and fled to the kitchen seeking more food and even then we were not able to capture her. Luckily for us as we were chasing her around the house, we left outside doors open, she chose one and now lives happily on our driveway awaiting her allocation of cat food for the day.

As I said at the beginning of this article, when you are 88 years old, you have to look anywhere for a little adventure to stem the boredom that old age brings about. If you are bored around your house, I could only recommend that you adopt several feral cats and perhaps they could help create some sort of excitement around your house.


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