Running With The Llamas Photo of Llama.

Kristin K. Fouquet

© Copyright 1999 by Kristin K. Fouquet
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Snow was a white cat that belonged to a girl that my brother knew. The girl and the cat lived in a communal punk flat lovingly called The Armpit. One day the girl decided to move up north and consequently, my brother got the cat. I began to call him Snow Bunny and eventually dropped the Snow completely. It seemed that the rest of the family started to call him Bunny too. There was something very different about that cat. He was a free spirit.

Bunny made himself at home very quickly. He napped everywhere: high places, low places, conspicuous places, inconspicuous places, outside, inside, in laps, on heads. My mother would vacuum right next to him and it wouldn’t even stir him. At first, we thought that maybe he was deaf because we had heard that this often occurs in white cats, but he would come when we called him and he could certainly hear the can opener just fine.

One day, Bunny decided that he didn’t want to be white anymore. He came home gray. He was uniformly gray. When we brought him to the dog groomer’s shop, we were told that it was ash. The next morning, he was white but by that evening, he was gray again. It cost thirty dollars every time we had him cleaned. This went on for about a week and then we received a phone call from a man who lived around the corner. Apparently, Bunny had been rolling around in this man’s barbecue pit and he wasn’t very happy about it. We also disapproved and tried to keep him inside. We tried, but Bunny wanted to be free.

Bunny would sneak out and run away. He started running away in cars. One neighbor was halfway to work when he noticed Bunny in the backseat and had to come bring him back to us. Another neighbor was a cab driver. Bunny liked him. The driver often didn’t realize that he had a cat in his cab until he tried to pick up a fare and they would say, “Hey, is this cab taken?” On one occasion, he hitched a ride with a stranger and we finally found him at the pound. Neighbors started complaining to authorities and that was the beginning of the end for Bunny.

An animal control officer came to the house to inspect Bunny. Bunny didn’t like him, so he bit him. Soon, they wanted Bunny to be destroyed. We cried for days and didn’t know how to save our crazy rogue cat. My father knew some people that had a large farm with various animals and they agreed to take Bunny in. It was the only way the poor cat could cheat certain death. When we were asleep, my dad brought him to his new home.

After a few weeks went by, we went to visit Bunny. The farm was very large and had the usual animal residents like ducks, pigs, sheep, cows, and chickens. It also had llamas. The llamas had beautiful long eyelashes and gentle eyes. At first, I didn’t see Bunny at all, but then I heard something that sounded like a stampede. I turned around to see the elegant llamas running; they were running fast and proud. There was something that was white running with them. Yes, it was Bunny; he was running with the llamas. My eyes filled with tears. He looked so happy; he was finally free.

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