Look What the Cat Dragged In
Copyright 2012 Kira Bacal
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When I heard the whimper at my back door, I first thought I was imagining it. It had only been a few months since my beloved Ajax had finally crossed the rainbow bridge to the land of bountiful chew toys and dog biscuits, and I frequently mistook the odd scraping of a tree branch as a much-missed scratching at the door. But after a few minutes it became clear that my mind wasn’t playing tricks on me – there really was something out there, in the blinding blizzard.
As soon as I realized it, I rushed to the door. The wind chill factor was enough to freeze your marrow, and it was the kind of day that made even the arctic fox and mountain goat seek shelter from the storm. I had been out once, early that morning, to refill my woodbox, and I had had no intention of opening the door again. I’ve lived up here in the frozen north for a number of years, and I’m well able to cope with bitter winters. My cabin is snug, I have more than adequate supplies, and if my environs are lacking in my fellow humans, well, that was fine with me too. Don’t get me wrong – I’m not a hermit, but I love the wilderness and need my solitude in order to write. That said, I would no sooner leave man or beast outside in this sort of weather than I would set my hair on fire or play the accordion.