Once upon a time, about ten years ago, I wrote an article on a society formed to rescue cats. These are cats which are abandoned and are living behind dumpsters or under wrecked cars or anywhere they can. A miserable existence.
They informed me that there were 25 colonies of cats in Ottawa, cats that have banded together, I suppose to make it easier to live. Or maybe loneliness? As they were once house cats, I think it's not too hard to imagine that they're used to companionship.
This brings me to one of my favorite places in Ottawa, the colony of cats on Parliament Hill. I can walk there any time I want because I'm so close and I love to go up and check on the cats.
They used to live like other colonies of cats lived until about the eighties, when an older lady decided to take care of them. She came every day and fed them and pet them and made life easier for them.
Well, she aged and died. Before she did, a friend of hers told her he would make sure the cats were taken care of. He would take over feeding them. He went farther, not just feeding them but building them a little home that he fills with straw. Here, they can get out of the snow for warmth and the rain won't bother them.
There's a little box where you can leave a donation for the cats food. Sometimes people bring small cans of kitty food for them. They have old chairs in there where the cats can curl up.
If you go up there you can also see raccoons as they like to eat the kitty food, too.
People love to go see the cats on Parliament Hill and I like that. It means that they do care, that they're better kinds of people than the ones who just abandon their cats to an existence that's lonely and hard.
The woman who rescues the cats told me that every single cat she's rescued has been grateful. Licking and licking until she's has to put them down because their lives are so bad on the street.
So I take my camera up to the Hill and snap photos of the cats, happy that they have at least some comforts.