31 January 2007

La Micina

We have a new neighbor. She showed up a few weeks ago unannounced at the apartment next to ours. We wouldn’t have known she was there except for her meow. Clea is our neighbors’ tabby kitten.

We live in an apartment building that has a central courtyard (Valerie calls it an air shaft) with no garden and no balconies; there really is nowhere for a kitten to go when she is put outside. Clea will sit out on the landing in front of our apartments, sometimes quietly and sometimes meowing as cats do when she wants back inside. This has become a morning ritual for us: get up and peek out the door peep-hole or kitchen window to see if Clea is outside waiting, or just wait to hear her meow.

The interesting part of this is our landlord does not want us to have pets; she made that clear when we were looking at the apartment. Fortunate for Clea we rarely see our landlord in the building, and we aren’t about to give her up. Our neighbors are pensionati and one time when Clea was outside I asked la signora what the kitten’s name was, she said Cleopatra is her favorite name and they call the kitten Clea.

I am surprised that so far Valerie has not opened the door and invited Clea in one of these mornings, for us kittens are irresistible. For as Valerie says “poverina micina”.

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