Friday, April 24, 2009

Freedom- by Gabrielle

Some days I wish I were a cat.

We have two cats in our house- Taco and Bandit. Taco has been around forever, and he seems to do his best to avoid me. I'm not really sure why- I sing to him, hug him, play with his food and water, give him toys (even thought Mom's always saying things like "Don't shove the toy in his face, Gabby!" Like she'd know what anyone likes about toys...) But Bandit- she's new to our home. She actually came after me, which kinda makes her the baby. I don't mind, though, because Mom doesn't really give her all that much attention as the new baby. I mean, she never gets sung to or has her hair braided... she's totally dumb to not try to reap these things, but I'm not telling her about it.

But what Mom does give Bandit, that she doesn't give me- FREEDOM. That little fur ball gets to run around wherever she wants. She eats off the floor, climbs on the bed, fights with Taco, and no one ever says anything. Because she's a cat. Like that matters! I'm the only little girl in this house, and usually that allows me to get away with things. But Bandit has me totally beat.

Spring is here, and Mom's letting us play in the backyard more. Bandit comes, too. But Bandit, being the spoiled-rotten, gets-everything-she-wants-and-then-struts-around-about-it twit that she is, gets to go OUT of the backyard. I know, right?? Mom's always whining, "Stay on the grass, stay away from that hole, don't climb the fence, don't pull up the tree, yada yada yada." Geez, woman, I'm two years old! I know what I'm doing! And don't get me started on Josiah "Gabby's leaving the gate!" big brother extraordinaire. I tell you, these people just want to keep me down. Don't they see the big field on the other side of the fence?!? Don't the SEE the endless possibilities, the wide open spaces, the big blue skies?!? I don't know what a "dangerous ravine" or "sharp hidden rocks" or "rattlesnakes" are. But can they be at all interesting in comparison to a cat chasing a butterfly? I MUST go see! But, again, there is Mom with her "If you can't stay in a safe place, we'll have to go inside" all sweet and simple, like she's not tearing my life apart.

But I've found a way around this woman and her tyranny. It is called, as it so often is, Grandma. Yep, Grandma came over to watch us the other night, and we were already outside, so she let us stay. Chump. I mean, wonderful caring generous woman... Well, once I saw that Mom and Dad weren't hiding in the house just waiting for me to do something "wrong," I knew I had my chance. As soon as Bandit crawled under the fence to play in the field, I was right behind her. Yeah, I heard Grandma calling me, I heard Josiah, too. I knew that Grandma couldn't climb the fence, and she'd have to run through the house and back around the corner to get in the field to get me. OF COURSE I knew this, why would I have tried this stunt otherwise? Oh, the wind on my face! Oh, the itchy, spiky weedy grass things that scratch my legs! The wild abandon, the soul-soaring music I'm singing, the- hey, Grandma, that was pretty fast. Oh, yeah, I guess we'll have to go inside now. Not without one last protest, though- I'll kick and scream and call "Bandit!" the whole way.

Grandma didn't let me back outside that night. Even after I tried all my patented sure fire tricks on her- I batted my eyelashes, full of big real tears, I sat and snuggled her lap and said please, I even pulled out the big guns and sang her a song. No dice. I may have pushed her too far this time.

But I don't care. It was totally worth it. For one short minute, I was a cat...

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