Fat Cat's Nap The Fat Cat.

Loretta Hornby

© Copyright 1999 by Loretta Hornby
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This is a whimsical story based on my observation of snoozing cats and their attitude about life. Besides meal time, nap time is a definite priority, although not always so easy to achieve. Take a walk with Fat Cat as he tries to find the ideal spot for a little nap.

Ahhh. The sun felt warm on Fat Cat's back. Time for a little snooze.

Plunk.

Huh, what happened to the sun?

Fat Cat pried open an eye and sniffed. A tall cardboard box sat inches from his nose, draping a dark shadow across Fat Cat's back. It didn't smell like anything to eat, so why was it here? Worse, there was a man beside the box. He stepped over Fat Cat, slipped a piece of paper into the door, then turned and went away. He was gone, but the box wasn't. Its shadow still hung over Fat Cat's back.

This just wouldn't do. Fat Cat stretched and pressed his front paws against the box. It didn't move. So Fat Cat did.

He didn't like it, not one bit, leaving his cozy mat in front of the door. He hadn't been off those steps for weeks. Fat Cat never wandered too far. His dinner dish was on the other side of that door. Fat Cat was much better at snoozing than cruising.

Let's see. Where might be a nice place for a Fat Cat nap?

Fat Cat stepped and sniffed his way down the steps. No mat here. But what's this at the bottom? Could this be a mat?

Fat Cat sniffed the skateboard then tested it with a paw. Sunny and warm. Nice and flat. This will do just fine.

With a little spring, which is about all a big cat can manage, Fat Cat landed, four paws down, on the skateboard.

Now skateboards don't stand still for that sort of thing and this one was no exception. Off it whizzed, down the front sidewalk, bump, thump onto the street and straight across to the other side.

Fat Cat just stared, tail straight up and whiskers straight out. What kind of mat flies through the air? His door mat never moved, not even an inch. That's how he liked it. Flying was for birds.

Fat Cat did all right for his first ride on a skateboard. Having four feet helped a lot. Fortunately, the ride wasn't very long. Unfortunately however, it ended when the front wheels of the board dipped down into a storm drain and its back end flipped up. The skateboard stopped, but Fat Cat wasn't so lucky.

Through the air Fat Cat sailed. Right into an empty recycling box sitting by the curb. Stunned, Fat Cat just sat, wedged into a corner of that slippery blue box. He waited and wondered. Would this mat move too? It didn't so maybe it wouldn't.

Hmmm. It's warm in here and sunny too. Nothing to eat, but it might be just right for a little sleep. So Fat Cat curled up and went back to his nap.

But big empty boxes don't stay empty for long. Especially a recycling box. Fat Cat learned all about that when a newspaper splatted on top of his back. He spat, scritched scratched at that paper and sprang into the air. In his haste to get clear, he didn't notice the fence. But when he reached its top, he had no where to go. He had to stop. At least he was out of that box and away from that swat.

Fat Cat had never been on top of a fence before. That was quite a feat for such a large cat. So he sat and looked at this and that. It was much like his step, a good view of the street. He liked that. So maybe here he could sleep. It was warm and sunny and just enough room to stretch out on his tummy. So, with his paws curled up under his nose, Fat Cat yawned and he napped.

That nap was just started when more trouble arrived. It growled, it howled, it was most upset to see Fat Cat snoozing on that fence. Now, everyone knows, you can't nap around a noise like that. Especially if you're a cat and that noise comes from a dog. Dogs and Fat Cat naps just don't mix. But a tree would come in handy. And that's just where Fat Cat went. Up a tree, off that fence. Up scrabbled Fat Cat to a high up branch.

Whew. So much for that trap. A fence might be high and nice and sunny. But that was no place for a Fat Cat nap. Not with dogs nearby barking and jumping.

But a tree might be a good spot to catch a few winks. No dogs up here. Can still see the street. It's not moving. And best of all, it's warm and sunny. Surely, up here, a nap could be finished.

Too tuckered to care, Fat Cat hunkered down. Balancing on that branch didn't bother him a bit. He might be big, even quite round, but staying put in one place was no problem at all. He held on with sharp claws poking out of his paws. Even asleep, they did their job.

It was quite a site, that great fuzzy cat perched on that branch. Fuzzy and, could it be, a yummy treat, a juicy ripe peach? Just what a big black bird might like to munch. A big black bird like the one circling above Fat Cat's branch.

Look out Fat Cat! This is no time to nap!

The raven landed, barely bouncing the branch. Then hop, stop, hop as it checked out that peach. Careful, get closer, don't let it drop. Just one more hop then a little poke.

Yeeoow. That one little poke caused a Fat Cat storm.

Fur, teeth and claws sprang from Fat Cat. He spun, spit, swatted. He hissed and he spat. What was that? What poky thing ruined Fat Cat's nap?

No one was more surprised than that big black bird. A peach with teeth. That was unheard. No meal here for a hungry bird. So off it flew, far away from that tree. Which is just where Fat Cat wanted to be.

Trees are for birds not Fat Cat naps. Steps are by far the best place for that. Fat Cat was never more sure of that.

Leaving behind his tree top perch, Fat Cat scampered back to his mat on the steps. Past fence and dog and box and board. Fat Cat was sure he would wander no more.

So much for finding a spot for a nap. A nice sunny spot to warm a Fat Cat. It was too late now, the sun was too low. So Fat Cat shuffled up to the door and he meowed. If he couldn't nap, then he would eat. It was always a good time for that. Best of all, his dish wouldn't move and chase him away. At least it hadn't before. Would it today?

After much meowing, the door opened up. In stepped Fat Cat, his nose leading him inside. He sniffed to his dish then stopped in his tracks. What was this, beside his dish? A lumpy post with a shelf on top. Almost as tall as that cardboard box. As a matter of fact, just the right height for a Fat Cat hop. So hop he did, up onto that shelf. Fat Cat circled round, his claws loving the feel of that carpeted top.

Could it be? Was this the spot? What would he do, that great Fat Cat?

Why, he stayed right there. Up on that post, curled up on that shelf. His dish remained full, his supper forgot.

What a marvelous mat for a Fat Cat nap.

And that is just what he did.

Ahhh. A nap at last.

I am a very 'ordinary' author (just a stay-at-home mom) who happens to be addicted to writing children's stories. I am still unpublished but, if I don't sell something soon, my husband is going to trade in my computer for a table saw. I have several of my stories showcased on ROSEDOG.COM with the hopes a publisher will find me there. In the meantime, I would love to share this story with your members. It's so important we support one another. Even if we never get 'officially' published, an encouraging word from another writer does wonders for the self-esteem (which us stay-at-home moms are in short supply of). I hope you enjoyed my story as much as I did writing it.

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