PAUL LEE CANNON, a fellow garden writer, shared this fun feline -
"I met this handsome, green-eyed ginger Tuesday morning. His beautiful coat stood out amongst the dappled shade of a large mimosa tree that anchors our small front garden. Judging by his crouching-tiger stance, I'm certain he was prowling for birds. When I opened the front door, he ran right up and even tried to work his way into the house. The adorable little beast wore a collar with a bell and an ID tag engraved with "Byron" on one side, owner's address and phone number on the other. We hadn't yet met this neighbor, so I thought I'd pay a visit and see if anyone was home. I'll give you one guess who followed me. Turns out no one was home so I walked back to my house, my new furry friend bouncing closely behind. My spouse, Hugo, opened the front door and Lord Byron (slight name change 'cause oh lordy, is he a sweetie!) ran right in – straight to the food bowls of our two indoor flame point Siamese cats. (Fortunately, they were upstairs snoozing!) He was ravenous, devouring the dry food as if he hadn't eaten in days. After we carried him back outside, he returned to crouching-tiger stance, this time behind our breath-of-heaven bush. I had to return to my desk to get some work done, but of course was fully distracted by the yearning to play with this furr-ocious cutie* all day. "
"A couple hours later, I looked out the front window and didn't see Lord Byron anywhere. Still, I walked outside to see if maybe (hopefully!) he was close by. Something told me I should go to the backyard so I did. Sure enough, there he was, pacing back and forth along the top of a high fence. He let out a few whimpering mews because he couldn't figure out an easy way down. Balanced on a narrow patch of retaining wall, I came to the rescue, reaching out and up. He cautiously eased his body into my hands and we both swiftly returned to safer ground."
"That evening, while I was away exercising, Hugo told me the cat's owner had stopped by. He learned that Byron shares living space with several dogs, but has a cat door through which he can come and go as he pleases. Then Wednesday morning, much, MUCH to our delight, Lord Byron returned to the manor (aka our back garden). We fed the little monster some wet food, followed by a few sprigs of kitty crack (aka catmint), which immediately sent him into a possessed state. I had a few gardening tasks to tend to and what pure joy it was to have this precious kitty follow me from plot to plot. I saw my future in that moment ... living my golden years in a more rural space, a loyal, lovable creature keeping me company as I tended the flower and veggie beds."
"That night, as we were about to head out for dinner with friends, Byron's owner was out walking one of his doggies and introduced the pooch and himself. He asked if we'd seen Byron, whom at the moment was nowhere to be seen. 'We love him! He spent the morning in our back yard," I replied. 'He's welcome here any time.' "
*Loves chin rubs, belly rubs, being held, and being my shadow.