In the fashion world, a catwalk is a narrow walkway where models show off the latest fashions of Valentino, Donatella Versace, Oscar de la Renta and other famous designers.
In my world, a catwalk is a typical morning stroll.
That's because cats have the habit of showing up while I walk. All kinds and colors. On porches, driveways, sidewalks.
If I call them, they'll come up to me. They rub against my leg as I try to take their photo. Curious creatures. Full of affection and curiosity.
These are some of my feline friends.
Cats also show up on our family vacations. In Rome, we stumbled across cats dwelling among the temple ruins in Torre Argentina. We've spotted cats roaming the Old City in Dubrovnik and living in the Alhambra in Granada, Spain.
Cats don't always show up every time I take a walk. It's possible I don't see them because I'm usually preoccupied thinking about new blog posts, writing projects, and marketing ideas. Some of my best ideas come when I'm strolling the neighborhood.
But one day on a walk, my focus drifted from writely projects and marketing woes to the dynamics of business and personal relationships. Several unpleasant circumstances had cropped up and these weighed heavily on my mind. These situations totally bummed me out and made me angry and confused because close friends had let me down. I tried to figure out why people were arrogant, mean-spirited, self-absorbed, and disrespectful. I wondered how people could not be aware of the hurt and damage their actions (or lack of actions) cause.
The further I walked, the sadder I got. There were simply no answers.
I headed to a shady spot to stretch my back. To sip water. To mop the sweat from my brow. Despite the break, my mood persisted. I couldn't shake it as I pushed on.
And then a cat spotted me.
A big, beautiful fluffy Persian cat with icy blue eyes.
He trotted from a front yard garden to greet me. This little bundle of fur. Had he sensed my feelings?
The only thing I could think about and wanted to think about was this gorgeous cat.
He didn't come to me for a rub or a pat on the head. But his actions were purposeful and deliberate.
He pressed his lips against my hand—a common catlike thing to do—and he marked me with his scent, calling me his human, assuaging the hurt.
He offer tender feline love at a time I needed it most.