Former street cat Mimi has never told us how old she is. Having been born on the streets and having lived behind shops in a laneway for years, Mimi can be forgiven for wanting to forget her past.
We estimate Mimi to be around ten years of age.
Her existence filtered through to us from time to time over the years: reports of stray cats she knocked around with, one in particular who must have been a relative. Cats living down the laneway with other stray cats., All fed by the kindness of strangers, sometimes well, others not. Mimi and her reported pregnancies: reappearing at times after periods of absence to concerned shop residents as a thin sickly girl with a skin condition.
We can only assume she went away to have her babies or to nurse a bout of flu.
It was during that last period, having been summoned urgently by a shop employee that we made several attempts to trap Mimi to get her in to care. We later found that we were just a number in. a long line of failed rescuers.
Mimi had been keeping company with another black cat, a male. He had the same skin condition and the same rusty colour to his coat as Mimi did. Being hungry and malnourished, he had no issue with the trap. Charlie, as we called him lived with us for the next six or more years until he died around a month ago. Charlie became a big smoochy boy who even gave our vet kisses the day before he died.
Sadly though, we needed to give up on Mimi and leave her in the care of shop keepers to look after.
The worst issues were the continual pregnancies Mimi went through with the untimely demise of her kittens. Kittens removed for being 'wild', kittens taken away from their nest and disposed of. Why would Mimi trust humans? Yet she had to for her own survival.
The photo below was taken by one of the shop keepers. The kittens were not found after she gave birth. We walked up and down that laneway, poking into the garbage of the backs of shops, peering through locked gates into jungles of un mowed grass and junk and Mimi kept us company seemingly perplexed at what we were looking for.
Two years on from the above scene and on top of another loss Mimi was again heavily pregnant. It was Winter, she was tired, cold and hungry and she volunteered to walk into the trap of another rescuer.
Mimi's three kittens were born in care. Semra. our volunteer carer lavished the family with love, and good food. This was an opportunity to teach her own children important values.
The little girl was adopted by her, the boys with others and Mimi came back to us at Catmint Cottage.
Mimi did go out for adoption around eighteen months ago. In her new home she found a superior hiding spot by sliding the wardrobe doors open and setting up a little nesting spot on the carpet on the bottom. It was warm, dark, private and safe. Her new person was kind enough to leave her there and provide food and Mimi was kind enough to come out and use the litter.
Unfortunately not even ten days in, the lady fell down some steps and cracked her hip.
We were summoned and Mimi came back home to us.
We would love to see her find her own person and live out the rest of her life in good care.