The first night I passed by the pub on Fourth, I didn’t see her. Why would I expect her to be there when I want to find her? I hovered around the area for a couple days and after a busy weekend, I was sure I would spot her nursing a gin, gazing out the window, kindly turning down offers of human companionship and then losing herself in thoughts.
But when the morning came and I still didn’t spot her, I decided to follow my nose back to her place. Surely it would have been more courteous to pay a visit after you’ve been invited but I had a nervous flutter in my stomach. It hadn’t occurred to me until now, that even as habitual as she was, she might have been pondering the course of her life, night after night, at the pub.
A strange fear took over me. What if she’s moved on, taken another direction, moved to another area or even out of the city? I didn’t even want to think about the worst possible scenario that she’s hurt or…or… The sick sense of never seeing her again overwhelmed me. The gentle caress of her delicate fingers, wafts of lavender, her youthful energy. What if I never know why she wept at night and for all it’s worth will she ever know that there is an old tomcat cat who cares deeply about her.
Climbing through the bathroom window was trickier than slithering out. It took a couple of embarrassing tries of groping around the ledge to get a sense of its size. I’m sure the birds in the area were amused to see their natural predator engage in something so trivial. I find a sliver in the wood to latch onto and I’m able to land all four paws onto the narrow sill. The pane is open as expected. Good.
As I make my way out of the bathroom I feel rather silly. What am I doing barging in like this? What if I startle her and she shoos me away with a broom stick? Would that put an end to our encounters (for lack of a better word)? Will I continue to search for the next meal and the next bed to the end of my days?
I hear movement in the kitchen. My heart races as I bound across the living room. She’s not there. Just the whispers of an old building. As I search the apartment again, I notice that this is the first time I’ve seen it left so untidy. There were open containers of food, unwashed dishes, little clutters of unfinished projects, and a ruffled bed with shirts thrown on top.
I decide to wait.
‘Through Ian’s Eyes’ is a mini project based on my friend’s 1000+ iPhone photos taken between 2013-14. In the series I will pick one photo a day for a week to interpret in drawing and story. Ian and I met 8 years ago in Beijing and maintained a supportive, close friendship through email, skype and random meetings in Montreal, Vancouver, Vermont and New York. He is one of the most fascinating and caring people that I know and I hope to give you a playful glimpse of his personality through the characterization of him… as a cat.