Brief encounter

Dot writes: this morning I was about a mile and a half into my run (I’m training for the mini-marathon again this year) when I saw a familiar face.

Our little Tibby cat ran off before Halloween. We distributed leaflets to the neighbours, we searched up and down the lane, I called each night for a week, but there was no sign of him and he didn’t come back. Who knows what exactly he got up to after he ran out of the door that dark October morning? But this morning he was definitely sitting on the dividing wall between 53 and 55 Howth Road.

I offered him a hand to sniff. He sniffed it. I wanted to get him to stand up so I could check whether the familiar splash of white on the chest was accompanied by the expected white spot on the belly; coming forward to sniff my hand, he revealed the white spot. We exchanged pleasantries, by which I mean I stroked his head a little hesitantly and he nipped my hand slightly, as he often used to. He got down off the wall and showed some inclination to walk along with me. But then I ran off – after all, I was supposed to be doing a training run.

He has filled out. He seems healthy, though I thought he could do with a bit of grooming – his fur seemed a little dandruffy, though any white fleck is conspicuous on a black cat in sunlight. I was very happy to see that he is well and that the fox down the lane didn’t get him. But it was a little melancholy: for I missed him so much when he disappeared and used to dream (literal night-time dreams) of being reunited with him, but today our meeting was friendly but far from ecstatic. He didn’t seem like my cat any more.

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