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Here’s How 2 Kittens Help Brighten Up My Pandemic Days

Since the last couple of months, my neighbour’s kitties have turned my apartment into their very own bed and breakfast with occasional free lunch and dinners served as well.

A bed-and-breakfast with a twist though. It gets paid in cat cuteness and cat love instead of actual money. Oh and most importantly, the privilege of serving their Lordships twice a day is probably the greatest payment of all!

It all began one evening when my mother suddenly shrieked seeing a tiny black ball dart in from the balcony, dash past the living room and make its way right underneath our bed.

She thought it was a giant rat!

Just as I was about to get up from my work desk to investigate the matter closely, the black ball zoomed out from underneath the bed, shot past the living room out the main door into the balcony.

By the time we reached the balcony, the ‘ball’ of fur had jumped over to the next-door neighbour’s terrace (inches apart from our balcony) and there, safe and smug in the knowledge that a dumb human won’t be able to leap across the 4th-floor balcony of one building to the 3rd-floor terrace of the next, our royal friend sat staring at us.

And it is then that we realized, in the fading light of dusk, that the ‘giant rat’ was in fact a rat’s nemesis- a cat. More specifically an adolescent one. Somewhere between a young kitten and a full-grown adult.

Meet The Kittens

Greyish black with a coat of long, flowing hair and a thick, fluffy tail, our feline guest tried to size up the pair of humans that were looking at her so intently. Her saucer-shaped eyes gleamed with a mix of curiosity and apprehension.

I was over the moon!

So was my mom!

For you see we are a family of cat lovers who has had cats our entire lives.

Infact if you visit my family home any time of the year, you will find atleast half a dozen cats, of various shapes, sizes and colours, milling around all over the place!

I have had to move to a different city 4 years back for my job.

I stay in a rented apartment here by myself and between work and commute, pre-COVID times would see the better part of my weekdays spent outside my apartment.

Being an animal lover, the thought of abandoning my pet for such extended hours and leaving her cooped up in a multi-storey apartment, all by herself, was enough to prevent me from adopting one so far.

But the COVID isolation and work from home has put an end to that line of worry. Atleast for the time being.

And I have been badly yearning to adopt a kitten for such a long time.

My Instagram feed and Facebook timeline are all choked up with cat jokes and funny cat videos and cute cat pics!

So you can quite imagine my joy at being blessed with this sudden visit from my feline neighbour!

So that evening, after the initial 5 minutes of telepathic hi hellos with our new friend, I hurried back into our kitchen, heated some milk and left a saucer of milk on the balcony, in hopes to lure her back again.

Then I went back inside and kept waiting for her to come back.

After about a good half hour, I saw another cat face, this one was a mix of yellow, orange and black, peeping in through my living room door!

This one too darted back into the neighbour’s terrace the moment I got up to take a better look at it.

From my balcony, I could now see the two of them, possibly siblings, watching me intently from afar.

And the milk was gone!

The No-nonsense Sister!

This second kitten was somewhat of a calico- a mix of orange, black and white. While she looked about the same age as the black one, pre-pubescent adolescents in cat age, she had shorter hair and a thin tail.

That was the beginning of our glorious friendship!

It has been 2 months now and counting.

They are no longer scared of us and walk in any time of the day or night that their royal highnesses please.

The Flirty Brother And His Hungry Sister

‘’Did you just call me a flirt?”

I have found out the kittens are a pair of brother and sister.

The black one being the brother and the orange one its sister.

So the ‘she’ I was referring to in the paragraphs above actually turned out to be a ‘he’.

The brother is an instant charmer. Soft and fluffy with beguiling eyes that would melt the heart of even a hardened serial killer!

He is also quite a sophisticated and intelligent bloke, who likes to play more and eat less and sit with his big bushy tail carefully wrapped around his legs. And when he is hungry he would weave through my legs meowing very softly, to let me know its food time.

He is also a complete tease and a flirt.

That rascal has got me wrapped around its fluffy little paws and he knows it too well!

And puts this knowledge to his full advantage.

For you see, while normally he never lets me cuddle him or so much as touch him, come meal time you will be surprised by the transformation!

Suddenly he starts acting coy, brushing his tail past my legs and giving me the ‘come, hither’ look! These are the only times that he lets me pick him up (but not cuddle, just lets me hold him for like 10 seconds max) and run my hand over his silky-smooth coat in exchange for some fish and milk!

The orange and black sister is a completely different character from her brother!

She is always hungry no matter how many times you feed her.

And every time she sees or suspects food anywhere nearby, she starts meowing at the top of her lungs. After about 5 minutes of that shrill, incessant crying to get her bowl filled up, we usually have to give in and pander to her demands if only to maintain our sanity!

This lady is a far more practical version of her dreamier brother.

The brother seen here getting comfy with the sister!

She doesn’t care much for toys or acting cute or petting.

Feed her all the fish you can get hold of and she would let you live in peace.

While at times her relentless, high pitch meows do test my patience, I cannot help but admire her determination to get what she wants!

A very focussed young lady this one is for sure!

How The Kittens Have Been a Blessing In COVID times

Their Lordships lounging around in our chair

Living in COVID times with an elderly parent means having to be more responsible than most happy-go-lucky young people who have already started travelling, partying and going back to their normal, pre-covid lives.

Staying isolated up in one’s own apartment for close to a year, constantly scared of getting infected by the virus and resisting the temptation to go out and enjoy social interactions can be freakishly hard.

Add to that staggering pressure at work and long hours in front of the computer.

It’s a recipe for losing one’s mind.

Infact my mother, an otherwise optimistic and cheerful individual, has been suffering from depression these last few months.

These two angels however have made our lives significantly better over the last few weeks!

Every morning, we eagerly look forward to welcoming these two buttercups with their breakfast bowl of milk and follow it up with a snack here and a snack there at various points in the day. Their presence instantly brightens up the house and brings over a flush of joy to our tired hearts!

So in this pandemic, if you are feeling depressed or isolated, go adopt a pet from your nearest shelter or have one walk right into your home! You will not be disappointed, I promise you that!



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