This is a post I originally wrote on Medium.
(Content warning: loss of a pet. This was written the night before I lost mine.)
In 2008, a friend I knew offered me a room at her place and also a job doing bookkeeping for the small business she ran out of her house. At the time I was effectively homeless. I had a place to stay, but it wasn’t mine, had only a few things of mine there, no job, and was really a toxic place to be. I took the job and the place to stay.
When I went over there for the first time, I met the other employees that worked there. But then I met Waldo. He was an adorable tortoise-shelled brown cat that happily greeted everyone with a friendly “meow.” Not just that, but the whole neighborhood knew this cat. They’d let him outside and he’d wander the yards. I’m sure the cat heard “Hey Waldo!” fairly often on his little journeys into the neighborhood. He’d always wander back.
Then I learned that Waldo was a she. Apparently the owner got the cat from an old ex-boyfriend, and just took care of it. It seemed she had no interest in the cat really, just took care of it. Waldo was named by the owner’s daughter. “Waldo” seemed to suit this cat. And, well, she answered to it. Over time, the cat also found me every night and would sleep on the bed with me. I didn’t have to hunt the cat down, she just knew it was human sleep time, and could gain some extra cuddles.
When the house we were in went into foreclosure, I had to find a new place to live. Thankfully by then I had made some money and wasn’t in as much of a financial mess anymore. The cat fell in love with me, and I had fallen in love with the cat. She came with me. I was taking care of her at the place anyway, it only made sense.
Read more about my wonderful cat and I on the rest of the Medium post.