Tuesday, May 1, 2007

Barn Kitty Miss Kitty

Miss Kitty lived at the barn where I took riding lessons. She was dainty and lady-like. A small muted calico, she was far more interested in being a house kitty than a barn kitty. It seemed that there were several “liabilities” at the barn that prevented her from fully appreciating an outdoor life. Three dogs hung around the barn and she didn’t like smelling them. Furthermore, horses, in her opinion, were large and attracted flies.

She was supposed to control the mouse population. Ha! She didn’t eat mice; she ate crunchies. Mice were for cats who didn’t live in houses. She didn’t live in a house except for those times when she darted past my riding instructor’s feet through the door. She was extremely annoyed when caught and put outside. After about a year of this, my instructor surrendered and Miss Kitty became Miss House Kitty after all.

This left the mouse population unchecked. My instructor fearless of horses, dogs and even big, black furry spiders was DEATHLY afraid of mice. The mice would become trapped in the grain bin when the grain level was low and could not jump back out. With girlish nerves, my instructor would scoop them up in a feed scoop, leap back, and squeal as she tried to fling the mice free of the feed bin. Concerned for the well-being of the mice I volunteered to scoop them out. And so we went day to day feeding mice and delivering them safely to the floor of the feed room. Compassion outweighed common sense.

In the end, Miss Kitty taught me an important lesson. You can lead a horse to water but you can’t make him drink. You can give a cat a mouse but you can’t make her pounce!

No comments: