i was disappointed that my hexum cat was MIA when i arrived home from california. i figured i would see him the next morning, tapping his tail against the window screen until i let him inside. but day after day passed and the cold wintery weather continued with no sign of my little orange striped cat. he's an indoor/outdoor cat and the longest he ever strayed from home was four days -- the week my cousin and her kids came over to feed the cats while my mom and i were down the shore.
my mom was convinced an owl or coyote or fox had gotten the best of my cat (one time a fox had my cat up a tree), but i doubted the scenario. i didn't want to believe it. in my mind, someone found him and took him in, thinking he was just a friendly stray. hexum is slender, does not have a collar and one of his eyes is duller than the other eye (due to a mysterious, outdoor injury) so he could be mistaken for a stray. i thought about his eye injury and wondered if that put him at a disadvantage, making him an easy target. i wanted to put "missing cat" fliers in nearby mailboxes, saving one for the bulletin board at the post office.
it seemed like every pet product commercial featured an orange striped cat that looked just like my poor little missing hexum!! i started paying more attention to my mother's cat who's a good cat, but no substitute for my hexum.
he was obviously hurt or trapped somewhere because he always comes home when you call him. the day before Christmas eve marked one week of his disappearance. by this time i had checked the garage; my mom had checked the barn and we had been calling his name outside once or twice a day. about to accept his disappearance, i reminisced about the four years i spent with him.
my mom and i had just finished some last minute Christmas shopping (and a meal at ruby tuesdays) and returned home around 9:00-9:30 PM. it was a lousy day outside. all of the torrential rain had melted the remaining ice and snow. we carried some bags inside and my mom opened the door to take my dog outside. in runs a cat who jumps right up on the kitchen table. my mom assumed it was her cat, but it was hexum... soaking wet and hungry as ever!! i was in disbelief. i just pointed at him and called my mother into the kitchen. we were surprised and relieved. it was a mini Christmas miracle!! and the cutest part was yet to come...
after hexum devoured one can of cat food and a dish of dry food, he plopped himself right under our Christmas tree, as if he were a present!! i'm so glad he came home!!