Dear Friends, Zoe here but not for long! I’ve been preparing to take this trip, you see, and have been so busy that I neglected to write up a wonderful new adventure for you. So, I’ve asked a friend to take my spot this month. I’ve told you about my human, Emily, and I’ve told you about my friend, Bella, but I’ve never told you about my friend Burt. Or how I met him. That is a tale for another day. Let’s just say that Burt owed me a favor. Big time. I’m happy to call in my chips today, probably happier than he is to be called on to do this favor for me. At any rate, here is Burt. I hope he entertains you well but don’t get too enamored, for I will be back next month!
Hello, Everyone. My name is Burt. I’m a friend of Zoe’s. I reckon you all know her. She lives in a house near where I live. She is rather refined, in a nice way. Me, I live in an alley a block away. My left ear is half chewed off—a casualty of war.
Zoe has asked me to take over for her this month. Said something about a last-minute trip, but I can’t tell you anything more about that. She’s a girl cat and yaks a lot. I’m a guy cat and tune the yakking out. Anyway, seeing as how I had nothing else on my plate, I decided to take a shot at it. I’m not a writer, but how hard can it be? Don’t they say write like you talk? That’s the easy part, but what does one write about? Zoe mentioned adventures and I think I can handle that because, unlike Zoe, I roam far and near. And on those forays, I’ve had many adventures.
So I figure I’ll tell you about my most memorable adventure. This will be a short adventure story because, like I already told ya, I’m against yakking for yakking’s sake.
It happened in Boston. I was bored and, finding nothing of interest nearby, I headed south and found myself in Beantown. Now, if any of ya’all have ever been to Boston, you know it’s a cool town. On the small side, but with more alleys than I can count. And a busy waterfront. It’s usually cooler and breezy by the water and this day was no different. Riding that breeze was my favorite smell of all, so I followed my nose to the pier.
About a dozen fishing boats were moored at The Wharf, and on the pier were several large boxes. All cats love boxes, even cool tomcats like me. I especially love boxes when they are full of fish. I jumped up onto the rim of one and eyed the flopping feast for a second before diving in. I was about to jump out, one fat, squiggly prize in my mouth, when the boat’s captain dumped a bucket of ice into the box, knocking me backward. Then he closed the cover of the box. Through the slats, I saw him sit his butt down. On top of the box. Just my luck. Of all the boxes, I hadda pick this one.
I made some noise, but he either didn’t hear me or didn’t care that I was stuck in there. I was getting cold. This was not a time for being patient. Or polite. So I thrust my paw right through the slats of the box cover and hooked my claws into that guy’s backside. He yelped like a pup. Or a little girl. Rubbing his backside, he jumped up, knocking the cover off the box, and I jumped out, that prize still in my mouth.
The fisherman wasn’t too happy about that. He shouted and came running toward me, brandishing a stick. How selfish. I mean, I took one stinkin’ fish, alright? I was going to bite his leg, but I didn’t want to let go of my dinner. So I ran off instead. I hunkered down in an alleyway and was about to savor my feast when I heard it. The loud and menacing growl of another tom. He was drooling and obviously very hungry. The day was quickly going downhill.
What followed is no surprise. I mean, we’re talkin’ about two cats and a fish. And that’s how my left ear got a little torn up. But you should have seen him! In the end—after I’d shown him who was really the boss—I showed him some mercy. I left him my left-overs. And then I did the Stray Cat Strut out of that alley and all the way home.
(psssst . . . let’s see if Zoe can top THAT next month!)