The scene: Our bedroom. Some ungodly hour this morning.
Husband: Wife, wake up!
Me: [Immediately sitting straight up in bed as if the house is on fire] What?! What happened?!
Husband: Where's Ellie?
[Husband then sticks his hand out the window, showing me that there is no screen.]
After a brief, yet frantic, search around the apartment, we realized that Ellie (our tiny, white, couldn't-survive-on-her-own-if-her-life-depended-on-it kitty) was definitely gone.
We put the pieces together. I'd woken up in the night and opened one of our bedroom windows, which unbeknownst to me has no screen. Around 5 a.m., Husband let Ellie into our room and she got in bed with us, so Husband went back to sleep. By the time he got out of the shower an hour later, he noticed she was gone.
We did several walks around our house and yard, calling her name. We even jumped in the car and circled around the neighbourhood. No luck.
Me: WHAT DO WE DO?!
Husband: Don't worry; cats have good instincts. She'll come home.
Me: Have you met Ellie?!
Ellie is a scared-y cat. If she does venture to put a paw or two out on the patio when the door is open, she quickly retreats at any sign of movement or noise. She's also a spoiled princess (Remember Husband getting up at 5 a.m. to bring her into bed with us? Yeah, that's right.).
I quickly e-mailed our neighbours (the owners of our duplex) to let the know what had happened. They're familiar with escapee-cat drama of their own, so I knew they'd be sympathetic.
By 6:45 a.m., Husband had to leave for work, so I was left to worry on my own — frantically drafting copy for a "missing cat" poster and trying not to imagine Ellie anywhere near rush-hour traffic on the nearby highway — until ...
Our fantastic upstairs neighbours were on the case as soon as they received our e-mail and found our little one hidden on their deck, but couldn't get her out. I quickly ran to her rescue, and there she was, hiding and completely traumatized, cowered under the tarp covering their patio furniture, and completely soaked from nose to tail.
Way too early for so much drama. Needless to say, that bedroom window is now locked tight and there's a cup of very strong coffee with my name on it.