The Day of 48 Hands
In the cat's historic timeline, this shall be recorded as The Day of 48 Hands. Those hands belonged to 24 very eager third graders excited to meet Ocho.
Show & Tell time came around for Olivia, and she asked to bring the cat again. Every year the cat gets trotted out for a couple dozen children and every year, surprisingly, she hates it.
I figure it's her contribution to the family since everyone performs a function, and 364 other days a year her function is to look pretty and get fur and paw prints on our cars.
In the morning, Olivia fed the cat and confined her to a small space where I could find her when I got home from work. I felt a little guilty because the cat was happy to see me; purring, rubbing on my leg, and flopping around back and forth the way content felines will.
"You're such a good kitty," I cooed. "You're about to go to school to be shown and told about!" She can't say she wasn't warned.
I picked her up, put her in the crate and hauled her off to my car. If this were a war, this would be the part considered as troops massing on the border. Severe protesting from the backseat.
In class, the children sat nicely while Olivia proudly talked about the cat and answered questions. She did a good job.
Then, the children went up to pet her one at a time with Gentle Hands. Of course, as with anything involving children, the rules were forgotten in the commotion and many hands covered all parts of the cat. Any furry part will do.
Ocho tolerated it politely and realized it was futile to protest. She ended up sitting there with an uncomfortable look on her face but with no meowing coming out.
Oh, the kids were cute. They wanted to come up and tell me about their pets, or how much they love cats, or how they've never pet one before. A couple hugged me for bringing Ocho in.
When we came home, Ocho ran directly under the car to make herself invisible. That was the most stimulation she'll have or want for the next year.
Until it's time for fourth grade.