Wednesday, March 9, 2022

An Enduring Friendship

Readers may recall that I have an outsider-cat who is a semi-regular at Café Cosy. Sable shows up most nights for several months at a time, helping herself to the hard-food which is always available, and partaking of the soft-food that I offer her.

For a long time, she has had a friend, a slightly tubby white and orange cat I’ve named Arliss. He shows up so rarely, with such intervals between his visits, that I often fear something has happened to him. I was surprised and pleased to see Arliss appear last night with Sable.

I know Arliss eats the hard-food but he is extremely skittish, so I’ve never been able to entice him to eat soft-food. Nonetheless, he does take advantage of the clean water in the heated bowl.

The two cats’ friendship interests me, especially after last night. Arliss, as I have mentioned, hardly ever comes to Café Cosy, though, when he does, it is always with Sable. Yesterday evening, Sable arrived, seemingly alone. I gave her some soft-food and, when I checked on her progress, I saw that Arliss had come with her. He quickly retreated when he observed me through the glass door, however, and kept his distance. When I opened the door to retrieve Sable’s empty bowl, Arliss ran off. Sable did not; she almost always remains for seconds. Yet, when I came back with her bowl re-charged, she was gone. I can conclude only that Sable preferred to leave with her friend than stay for more food, which was clearly her original intention.

I wonder about their friendship. Where is Arliss for the many months in which I see Sable without him? Does she maintain contact with him during these times, or is he gone from her knowledge, too, only to be happily re-united later? And where does Sable go during the periods of the year when she doesn’t patronise Café Cosy? They seem to be well-fed and well-groomed cats, though I know Sable has always been homeless and feral. Does Arliss have a summer-home to which he resorts during the warm days? Is someone else feeding Sable, and does Arliss go there, as well? And what is the extent of their friendship? How did it begin?

These are things I will never know in this life. Maybe some day, when I meet all those who have gone ahead, and those who will follow me, Sable will tell me. Then I will learn the secret of an enduring friendship.


  1. That is an interesting relationship. Cats have many secrets, don't they?

  2. boomer was like this, until my parents finally convinced him to give up life on the streets and come inside; once there he never looked back, but never told where he'd been either !! :) ☺☺♥♥

  3. If only we could read what cats were thinking. On second thoughts it may be as well that we can't!

  4. Arliss and Sable do have an interesting relationship. You said they seem to be well fed, so I wonder if they are part of a feral colony that has a caretaker. They may use the Cafe Cosy only on an "as needed" basis. Perhaps "Dr. Bellen" could interview them and have some of the questions answered??

  5. It would fun to be able to get a tracker put on Sable and maybe Arliss to see what their 'other' life is...yes, as if!

    Glad they do remember that ther are always welcome at your cafe.

  6. Well all I can say is that if you would have had one of those magic tracking buttons to put in Sables food to swallow, like in the crazy movies, you know exactly where she was. And even though that would be good to know I suppose the mystery of those two cats is an even better story.

  7. If anyone can get to the bottom of this mystery, it will be Dr Bellen, I know. I think when he has the time and his curiosity piqued enough, he may call out to Sable and ask her for a moment of her valuable time. He would show her as he makes his request, that he is conscous of her schedule and that she has things to do.

  8. It does make a person wonder about their life in the wild. They are both beautiful looking cats.
    I feed a black cat who I thought was a stray. He shows up during daylight hours and sometimes doesn't finish his wet food. Last summer he visited every day and helped me with my flower beds. I really hope he has a real home. He's been around for a few years but just started hanging around now that TomTom can't be outside. He was TomTom's arch enemy when he used to be free.
    The secret life of stray cats will always be a mystery that I wish I could solve.
    Thank you, as always, for feeding them!
    P.S. I see the back of Auric's head in the photo. He looks fascinated by the black cat.

    1. He wanted to get a good look at them. But then, he's fascinated by almost everything.

  9. Arliss and Sable's relationship reminds me of Angel Hobo and Sweetie, back in the day. He traveled alone, but she always traveled with Hobo. Then, when Hobo left, then Sammy left, Sweetie and The PO'M were together, although they were never as 'tight' as Hobo and Sweetie were.
    Maybe we need to emulate Jane Goodall, but with outside/stray cats!

  10. I know these two are most grateful for your hospitality!

  11. Definitely a puzzle that you're unlikely to know the answer to, unless you somehow put tracking devices on two feral cats. Not likely to happen....

  12. They are very cute!! Our neighbor kitty Sheldon comes and visits our yard and we always wonder what he is up to.

    Fank you fur your kind words on our blog about brudder Matt. ♥