The red-headed lady did not stop to adopt it, but only to hold it, to feel its warmth against her shoulder and then to move on, to do the same with some puppies being given away by another family elsewhere in the parking lot.
If I understood correctly, the kitten give-away had started with three kittens, but when I drove by, saw the sign, and stopped, two kittens remained - and they had been claimed, sort of, by still another red-headed woman (but not quite so red as the first) who had arrived on the scene shortly before I did.
Obviously, the girl who is giving Little Fuzzy away loves Little Fuzzy, but her home already has as many cats, or cat, (oh, my skills as a reporter are slipping! I did not learn this information) as the family is able to keep.
This little guy is Chimichanga, and the hand reaching in to pet him belongs to the woman who has claimed him - sort of.
This is the woman who has claimed Chimichanga and Little Fuzzy - sort of. Her name is Rhonda and I say, "sort of," because she is involved with a group that calls itself "Mat-Valley Kitties Rescue Group."
When she learned that these kittens were being given away at the Wal-Mart parking lot, Rhonda rushed right over. The rescue group makes certain that all kittens who come into their care get their shots, and they insist that all who adopt them spay and neuter the kittens, and agree to keep them as indoor cats only.
Even though she did not plan to keep them herself, Rhonda claimed the kittens so that she could be certain that they would wind up in homes that would do these things for them.
Did I ever mention that we got our Chicago from a family that was giving away kittens in the Wal-Mart parking lot? Chicago, of course, has all her shots, is spayed and is an indoor cat, but, when it came to Little Fuzzy and Chimichanga, Rhonda did not want to leave such matters to chance.
I left the kittens, stopped to visit the puppies, then headed home. I had not driven far before I came upon a tragic scene: a cat, lying dead on the shoulder of the road. I did not know what to do. I wanted to pick the cat up, take it home, and put it in that place in the meadow behind our house where I have lain the other dead cats that I have pulled from the roadside, but maybe the cat had people who would be looking for it; people who would find its body if I left it there a little longer; people who would forever wonder what had happened to it if I picked it up.
I decided to give them four hours to find the cat, who looked so much like our Pistol-Yero. After four hours, I headed back to the scene with rubber gloves and a plastic bag - I will not call it a garbage bag because I did not intend to put garbage in it. If necessary, I was going to put something precious in that bag.
When I arrived, the cat was gone. I will not judge the people of this cat, but will mourn for them, because I know nothing of the circumstance that led this beautiful little creature to wind killed by on the shoulder of the road. Also, people come to their own understanding of such matters as they come to them. The Kracker Cats were all indoor-outdoor cats until I lost Little Guy and Thunder Paws got killed by a dog right in our back yard.
After that, the new kittens that came into the family all became indoor cats. Yet it is a fact that Little Guy and Thunder Paws led wonderful, happy, fulfilling lives and had many grand experiences that no indoor cat will ever experience.
It makes me think of myself, and all the things that I have done that could have killed or crippled me (and then I finally get hurt when I stand on a chair!) I would rather have been killed or crippled, than to have lived the safe, sheltered life.
Is it so different for a cat? Yet, because I have a selfish side to me, because I cannot bear the thought of going through the pain that I experienced with Little Guy, and Thunder Paws, both of whom had grand lives that no indoor cat will ever know, I have made their successors indoor cats.
Still, seeing this cat did bring home to me why it is good that there are people like Rhonda out there, doing what they are doing.