It’s official, Ringo the cat is mine.  He is a cat bred from feline shamans long before him, he is both mystical and wise, striped like a tiger and also spotted with lynx markings. He is wild and free,yet, can be very gentlemanly too. 
     If you notice the photo of the old Japanese cat print I had purchased a while ago, my neighbor remarked it looked like Ringo. Then it connected, Ringo was the reincarnated cat sent here to watch over me. And that’s what he does, his eyes of Asiatic blue seas swim over the landscape, he notices everything. When I fish, Ringo is right next to me. He is the snake killer, I have watched his moves like that of an India snake charmer as he diverts the attention of a large snake, but then kills it in a snap. Ringo’s tail is serpentine and looks like it belongs to a raccoon. It beats and beats a furious rhythm in his head from the drums of the ancients. He is an amalgam of maverick forces, he is the supervisor and sleeps with one eye open. Nothing gets past Ringo.
   I met him when I moved in 4 years ago. He belonged to my neighbors, but quickly adapted to staying here most of the time along side my other cats; Frankie, Church and Sealy. Ringo has great respect for my elderly cats and does not attempt to harass them. He and Church, also a male, own the driveway. They eat together and usually can be found within a few feet of one another. Ringo is also quite a good cat to photograph and being an artist and a nature photographer, he is currently in a show I have exhibited in Winter Park Florida. So when my neighbors decided to move away to rural Tallahassee, they asked if Ringo could stay here. I have 3 cats and said no, I have enough. And the new neighbor who bought the house was swayed by those blue eyes and said she would take him. But it was Ringo who made the decision. Since they have moved away, Ringo has never looked back, never bothered to go to that home again, his place was predestined I suppose, foretold by the whispering winds, but I wasn’t listening, Ringo was though. This is how cats’ trick and control us humans, this is how I was duped into adding one more cat into my cat clan.
    Church is still the alpha male, though he is smaller and about five pounds lighter than Ringo, (Ringo is about 17 pounds) but sometimes now I catch Ringo looking at Church as a young lion eyeing the old, lazy established dominant male of the pride. I see that twinkle in Ringo’s eyes and watch his ears flatten and he dreams about trying to be the alpha male here. He is waiting it out so far, Church is fifteen, but feisty and a lightweight with lots of speed and accuracy, that’s what has managed to keep Ringos’ respect –so far. One slip and Ringo might try his luck. For now, status quo, these cats come into our lives with a purpose, I’m convinced it is predestined and all we humans can do is accept that it is the cat who adopts us and the fate that surrounds them which becomes ours and not vice versa…

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