Katz Tales: Inkie is upset and the precious catch flies away

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It was just before dawn, and I was on the phone with a dear friend in Cambodia, sorting out the world’s problems, when there was a frightened cry. Recognizing the problem, I ran upstairs to find Inkie with a mouth full of bird.

Seeing me, our tuxedo boy’s yellow eyes narrowed. I’ve already caught up with him, and this time, his gaze signaled, he wouldn’t let go.

Since he’s only 18 months old and I have years of badness in me, I’m not playing fair. I took him in my arms, accompanied him to the open bathroom window and whispered in his ear.

Totally shocked, Inkie let go. The bird floated in the air, straightened up, and flew away, its yellow belly glistening with relief and terror.

Inkie was furious. When I put him down, he looked up at me and let go. I talk a lot about the cat, and I know he called me a dog, among other things.

I apologized, even though we both knew my heart wasn’t in it, and answered my call.

Two minutes later, the birds outside screamed emergency calls and exploded from the tree. Looking outside, I saw Inkie on the small roof.

At first, I couldn’t believe my eyes. The cats have the main roof run, but it’s three stories up. As the small roof drops several meters below, there is no way to get there. It’s a dead drop. The kind that breaks bones.

But there was Inkie, buttocks squirming as he calculated the trajectory from the small roof to the tree. It was well over a meter, and at an odd angle. An impossible jump if you are human. But Inkie is not human. As I looked at him in horror, he jumped up.

He soared through the air and landed with all his claws out, elegantly clinging to a branch. Then, eyes firmly fixed on the circling birds, he quickly took off like a panther.

As Tom went to get the ladder, I hung up the phone and rushed outside, determined to keep my pet from falling, getting lost, or hurting himself. He’s an indoor boy, not used to being on his own outside, so I was terrified for him.

Well, I might have saved my breath. Our super naughty boy ran from branch to branch with all the grace and professionalism of a Cirque du Soleil acrobat.

As I stood on the ground, looking up anxiously, Inkie thought the birds were too savvy to approach him. Running along the tree, he once again flew through the air, landed on the small roof and disappeared.

Craning my neck, I couldn’t figure out where he had gone. Backing up, I checked the neighbor’s carport. It was empty.

Luckily, Inkie had made another leap, jumping a full yard and more into the bathroom window.

While Tom and I were running around like headless chickens, naughty Inkie was in the kitchen, enjoying a second breakfast of cookies.

Honestly, I didn’t know whether to laugh or scold. So I grabbed him and kissed him.

He was still annoyed but he nudged me. Unwillingly. And scolded me with insistent meows. In his annoyed tones, he too struggled between love and annoyance. Later, after completing the call, we met upstairs and performed an autopsy. Our bathroom window is narrow and tall. We couldn’t figure out how Inkie got out.

The mystery was soon solved: Inkie couldn’t jump from the floor to the windowsill. He’d never cared about it before, but with the bird flying out the window, he’d been flexing his brain.

I made it easier for him by folding down the toilet seat lid during the rescue operation. I did this in case the bird was flying back and forth, diving into the bowl, because birds can be silly that way.

Inkie is clearly far from dumb. He calculated that he could reach the window by jumping on the seat.

After doing it once, our smart boy knew he could jump from the floor to the toilet tank or the bathroom sink, and jump again to topple over the window sill. From there it is an easy descent to the small roof.

He enjoyed his adventure in the tree, because while I was checking the paw prints on the toilet tank, he came in, stocked up on cookies, and immediately attempted a recovery. Jumping onto the tank, the bottom squirming with intent as he did the math, he was ready to fly.

I sabotaged it by closing the bathroom window.

Since then, the window has remained closed. That means it’s super hot when you shower, but it’s better than having our ugly tuxedo running around outside. Inkie is not resourceful. Plus, there’s a giant python on the loose.

After loudly complaining about my interference, Inkie kept an eye on the bathroom, prowling and checking the perimeter several times a day, just in case I made a mistake.

Luckily, he’s not too upset. I bribed him with a huge plate of treats, and to top it off, the other two cats made a big fuss out of him.

Target is acting cool because he’s a senior cat, so it’s just a lick in the ear and the quiet assumption that they’re two pawsome cat-men together. But Tic Tac does everything possible. She dances around Inkie with excited chirps, kissing his ears, rubbing his whiskers against his face, and flattering him shamelessly.

Inkie swallows the treat and adulation with sweet contentment. But if I get the look right in those yellow eyes, he won’t let me anywhere near his hold next time.

Inkie, our indoor cat, is determined to embark on a career as a great wild hunter.


Adopt me

Toffee is almost nine months old, neutered, vaccinated and flea free. This handsome boy loves people, is curious as a cat should be and is also an active boy.Interested adopters should contact SPCA Penang, Jalan Jeti Jelutong, 11600 Jelutong, Penang (tel: 04-281 6559/ spca-penang.net website).

Photo: Lily Leng/SPCA Penang

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