I talk about, my cats….Actually, mostly, Leela.

I have two cats. One male, and quite grouchy. One female, and quite sweet. The grouchy cat is named, Molokko. The sweet cat is named, Leela. They are both from, Hong Kong. They sleep with me in my bed. When I am not working, they follow me about all day. They get quite attached.

They used to freak out every time I would take a shower. thinking that after I would shower I would get dressed and leave the house. Then they got used to the fact that I shower two to three times a day, no matter what. So, now they know the key is, cosmetics.

I do not personally think, I am a pretty woman. It isn’t that I think, I am ugly. I just think.  I am, who am. It is not remarkable, or wonderful, it is me. But, I am very feminine. I like to have make up on if I set foot out of the house. One, to combat pollution. Two, to feel like I am braving the world with a good face forward. And, three to be nice. It is easier for a person shy about speaking English to do so. With a person who has taken the care, to face them.

So, when I start to put on the special moisturizer to prepare my skin to face pollution, UV rays, and make up. The cats start to yowl. By the time I start to mix the primer to allow my moisturizer and foundation not to run in the heat. They are crying. I usually have to pause and explain, I am just popping out to go on an interview, or run an errand, or to see friends.

By then, I am mixing the different shades of powder that makes up my face powder. It varies the mix by time of day, year, and purpose. If I have a date, it may have a touch of shimmer. If I have an interview, it may be slightly lighter. If It is to go to the store, or something, it may just be a flat color that matches my skin, nothing more.  By then, the cats have decided, if it is of interest to cry some more. Or, go back to what they were doing.

Leela, likes to hang out two places during the day. Her favorite spot is on top of a shelf, close to the ceiling. No one can get her down from there. She comes dow, if I show any movement at leaving, or making food. Other than that she’s either there. Or, she is hanging on the couch. She follows the sun from the shelf, to the couch downstairs. She makes her move at about three in the afternoon. She hops down from the shelf makes a little squeak and pads downstairs to nap.  She naps on the couch until sunset.

She waits for the front door to open after dark. I live in a building with a neon on sign on it. The sign lights up, after sunset. Leela, throws a kitty fit to be allowed, to eat bugs on the roof. If you let her, and it is not raining. She will hunt bugs till the light goes off, at 12:30 am.  It is a bitch to get her to come back inside. I have to call, cajole, beg, bribe to get her to come inside. Sometimes, I leap out of the narrow window on to the roof and chase her back inside. That does not work always and then things get a bit dangerous. I refuse to go out there, now. If I fell people would say I was sad about my break up. I refuse to give anyone the satisfaction of saying that. He is not worth, it.

Leela is tiny at 4 pounds. She is almost two years old. She will not get any bigger. She is a hearty eater, for being so little. She is a messy cat.  She knocks food all over her area. She is destructive. She knocks knick knacks down,when I am sleeping. She has a way of banging around at night and opening doors. She meows like she is singing to herself, at night. She is cheerful, her meow is plaintive and low. “Woammmm.”

Leela came from the SPCA. She replaced another cat that passed away from a slow illness. I had to have the other cat put to sleep. She died in my arms. I was inconsolable. An acquaintance, was sympathetic, to my sadness.  He insisted that I go to the cat homing section and meet the cats up for adoption. I was reluctant to do this. But, my birthday was approaching, everyone was afraid, I would be depressed on my birthday. I went with my friend, Charliah.

The SPCA was really a joyful place. I went resolved that no cat, was going to replace the cat that died.  The cats up for adoption were in these cute little apartments. Each cat had little glass room. with a little primary colored polygon sleeping area. A bowl of crunchy food,  a water bowl, and a toy of some sort.

Leela’s apartment was the third one on the second level. There were twenty cats in apartments in the room. They were all ages all colors. There was a shortage of names. Every third cat, was named Choco.

Leela, was one of these. She was small. Maybe, two pounds. She was about, three months old. She lived in a park, in a cat colony in the New Territories. She had just gotten there and had a bath,  not vaccinated. She was so cheerful.

She was inside of the sleeping area.  I could only see her nose which charmed as it is so small and is three colors. She came out. As soon,  I was directly, in front of her apartment. She came out. I  looked at how sleek her coat, was. Her shiny, caliconess, was art deco ,and charming. Her ears are, and were, ridiculously, huge.

She and I made eye contact as though weighing each other. She crinkled her eyes, at me. Like she was smiling. Then, grabbed a little cloth ball in her apartment. Tossed it in the air. Caught it with one paw.  She fell into dance fighting the ball.  She seemed to be doing this for my entertainment only.  I would move away, she would eat ravenously. I would come back and she wold start doing these crazy acrobatics with this ball. She charmed me more than, any animal, I had ever seen in a shelter. I eyed her for an hour. She kept coming out just for me. She kept dancing, just for, me.

I took her out and she immediately started cuddling me and purring.  She wanted to perch on my shoulder like a bird. I told them that this had to be my cat. She got vaccinated and had surgery. She came home with a clear cone collar like, a space helmet.

We decided to name her after the character, Toranga Leela from Futurama. In that animated series, Leela, is a very competent captain  of a spaceship. Her parents are freaks that are outcasts of society. They gave her up so she would have a better life.  I related to this character. My parents always were at the fringes. They were always eager to dump me off on anyone who had a smudge more respectability than them. They knew that were inadequate parents.  They gave me speeches about I how when I got up enough, nerve. I should flee them. I was three, at the time. I feel as though I am competent. I know, I grew up at the fringes. I did not mind giving a fellow orphan. Who also seemed competent the same name.


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