Pet Disposal

Writers’ Trigger:

Most of my story prompts come from the newspaper. Not too long ago, Transport for London, listed items awaiting collection in their lost property office. Some of the abandoned items are worthy story starters.

  • Consider a few of the 148,000 belongings awaiting claim: a bishop’s crook, a harpoon gun, a pair of breast implants, a jar of false eyeballs, a bag of Rolex watches, a do-it-yourself vasectomy kit, a suitcase containing 10,000 pounds, and a badly stuffed eagle- complete with a half-eaten pigeon in its beak.  
  • As for the live rabbit, the bus driver chased the woman who left it. “Excuse me, you’ve left your rabbit!” The woman turned and said, “I don’t want it any more – I’m leaving the country tonight.”
  • Invent a story that whirls around one of these lost/discarded items.


I have this cat. We didn’t particularly choose her. She was more like a door prize. I went to a graduation party where perhaps I ate or drank more than my share. I don’t remember. What I do remember is that as the guests prepared to leave, the hostess led us to the box of nursing kittens. Wouldn’t we like one?

It was one of those times that one feels indebted. The hostess had entertained me, wasn’t it fair that I repay her in some way? And so, against my better judgement, I took a kitten.

We called her “Kitty” because we couldn’t be bothered to name her. A couple of years later, we moved to England and rented the house. Kitty came with the house – a “home accessory” of sorts. The first occupant had a toddler who tried to dress Kitty in doll clothes. The second tenant had a large, rambunctious dog that terrorized her. 

Kitty has survived abandonment, toddlers, dogs, rattlesnakes, and coyotes. My heart should go out to this Charles Dickens hard-times cat. She has not had an easy life. Even now that we are back in the States, she spends months, at-home with only daily visitations from a cat-care lady. 

And yet, she doesn’t hold it against us. She is always happy to see us and does not “act out” as many cats would. On the other hand, sometimes she gives me an intense stare,  and I can easily believe the superstition that cats have an unholy alliance with witches. It is a witchy stare that she gives me, and I know that if I were to leave her on a bus, she would forgive me.

Something dreadful would happen. More often than not, cats have the last laugh.


About timeout2

I have lived 100 lives. I write essays, short stories, poetry, grocery lists and notes to myself. If I am ever lost, look for a paper trail, but be careful not to trip over any books that lie scattered here and there. I am a reader. I am a reader in awe of writers. When I don't live in Westcliffe, Colorado, I live in London where I am a long-time member of Word-for-Word - Crouch End.
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2 Responses to Pet Disposal

  1. Doris, this is again a nice story. The list of lost items made me laugh out loud. Your last sentence is one too many and does not make sense. In the sentence before you say that your cat would forgive you. Or did you mean to say that your cat would NOT forgive you? Only then your last sentence would make sense.

    • timeout2 says:

      Dear Helga, I often have second (third or fourth) thoughts after I have published. I think that your comments were based on an earlier version. I revised before you posted your comment. My rushing does not lead to good outcomes. XO

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