In the fall of 2018 I heard about this new place called the Whiskers Cat Café where you could get a coffee from a barista and play with cats from KC Pet Project. Thinking this would be a fun thing to do with the family I looked up times to make an appointment. We didn't have any pets at the time but we love dogs and cats. There was a lot of demand though and I couldn't find any available times till the end of December. I thought, I'll take what I can get, little did I know that the forced timing here would yield a new family member.
We arrived ahead of schedule and checked in, gathered our cappuccinos and hot chocolates and waited for our chance to go back with the kitties. Eventually the group ahead us filled out and we rushed in to find a couple dozen cats climbing, clawing and playing everywhere. While standing next to the wall watching Bridget play with a calico kitty I felt pressure on my shoulder and turned to find an adorable tabby cat leaning off a shelf looking me right in the eyes. He leaned in more and nuzzled me and as I turned to look at him he sort of fell into my arms.
I called for Ana and Bridget to come look and he sensed the sudden increase in attention choosing to turn and hop back up on the shelf. They had built tunnels into the wall to allow cats to retreat to a safe place if they felt overwhelmed by the human visitors. He took a moment to consider his options and willingly came back to my open arms. I lowered him for Bridget to see and we all showered him with love. The three of us fell in love with him in that moment. Seeing unfold one of the staff members came over and casually announced, "he's available for adoption you know".
I can confidently say I had no intention of adopting when I arrived that morning but my mind was quickly changed by this bundle of fur. One look at Ana and I knew she agreed. We asked what an adoption would look like and another staff member joined us to answer questions. As we did not come prepared we had no way to safely get him home and asked if we could come back tomorrow to pick him up. They agreed and said they'd put a hold on him, That evening we purchased a carrying case, a bowl, food, toys, etc. basically all the necessities for a kitty.
We got a call later that evening asking us if we were sure we wanted him. Hesitantly I answered in the affirmative and asked why they were inquiring. "We've had several people come in after you and try to adopt him." Seeing how friendly he was this in no way surprised me but did make me a little nervous about waiting as we didn't pay them any money when we left.
We showed up first think the next morning with $50, a case, a blanket and treats. They said they'd already fielded calls that morning to see if we had changed our minds. They brought out his transfer paperwork from the animal shelter in Joplin he came from which had "Best Cat Ever!!" written in large letters on the top. We have learned over the last couple years how very true that is.
Today our little buddy turns 3 and we have so many wonderful memories with him already. He really does love to cuddle and purr, he plays nearly any chance we give him and is friendly to most visitors. The quarantine from the pandemic reduced the number of outside guests so he's a little shy now but he used to walk right up to anyone we let in the house (not exactly a guard cat).
We all have different relationships with Buzz. While Ana and I are working at home he loves to plant himself next to us while we're trying to type (like right now). Ana has become his clear favorite though, he follows her like a little puppy dog most days (sorry for the analogy Buzz). Dave doesn't even pet him, citing, "I don't know if he wants me to or not" but Dave's room is a quiet sanctuary for Buzz. Alexander lets him camp up on his queen loft bed to get away from little ones when they get loud and scary. Phaedra is the protector who will dive in and save Buzz when he's overwhelmed by others and Bridget plays with him and keeps him on his toes. We all consider him a member of the family and hope to spend many more years with out little furry buddy.