Everyone has a cat story, at least everyone who likes cats, and one of my favorites is the story of Fern. Fern lived with a reporter I knew up in Stuart, back in the days when portable phones were as big as our heads, and after my friend and her husband got a second cat, Fern quietly left home.
My friend felt badly, of course. Even a young reporter who survives on beer, cigarettes and the occasional front-page story has some maternal yearnings. Was Fern OK? Where had she gone? Should they have stayed a one-cat family? She fretted for months until a year or so later, as we were all getting sufficiently happy at a Christmas party at their house, there came Fern padding into the kitchen, looking marvelously happy and well-groomed in her holiday collar and bell.
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