Editor’s note: Does your Menlo Park pet have a story – or do you have a story to tell about your pet? Send it along to tips[at]inmenlo.com. Our first in this series was submitted by Ingrid Steinbergs who gives her cat Rockie his voice.
“My name is Rockie, and I am a 10-year-old flame point Siamese cat. I live with my Mom, and my wife, Ally, in Menlo Park.
“Nine years ago, I was rescued from the Santa Clara animal shelter by my Mom and Grandma. I first went to live at my Grandma’s house down in Sunnyvale, but after three days of trying to constantly cuddle with her and kiss her head – plus, I accidently walked into the fireplace and came out covered in soot – I was quickly adopted by Grandma’s daughter, Ingrid. We are a match made in heaven, as I love to kiss all the time and snuggle close, and she loves that too!
“After two weeks, I was let outside in the evening, as I was pretty good about walking around the fenced pool area and then coming back inside. But one night, I was very curious – as I am a cat – and I wondered out of the gated complex onto Willow Rd. I got confused about how to get back into the complex. My Mom was out most the night with a flashlight calling for me, but I never heard her.
“Well, what could have turned out to be a very sad story about my young life just starting out in Menlo, turned out to be a wonderful story about good neighbors and good people who live in Menlo Park. I was missing for five days. It rained very hard, and I was cold, wet, and hungry. My Mom rallied her friends together and they put up colored flyers with a big picture of me, along with a description, and posted them on every tree or telephone post for blocks and blocks. On the 5th day, Mom got a phone call one evening. It was a young woman who said, ‘I think I have your kitty in our laundry room downstairs. He has inward looking eyes, rings around his tail and orange tipped ears.’ They locked the door, so that I couldn’t escape, but I didn’t mind as it was warm and a shelter from the cold rain, which is why I had crawled in.
“About 10 minutes later my Mom came, and the people who lived there brought her down to the laundry room to see if I was her lost child. There was a small window, and I sat there looking straight up at the window. As my Mom looked in, she started to cry with pure joy that I had been found! When they opened up the door, I leapt into her arms and started purring so loudly. She was crying, the people who lived there started crying, as they, too, have cats and could empathize with how terrible it would feel if they had gone missing.
“It was so wonderful to be in my Mom’s arms again. I was pretty skinny by then and dirty looking, but very happy to be back home again. The next day we sent a huge bouquet of red roses and champagne to the nice people on Waverly who took the time to read the flyer and find me.
“I have never wandered off again, but then again, my Mom watches me like a hawk when I am outside. The following year, I got introduced to another rescue kitty, who Mom adopted from Pets in Need in Redwood City. It was love at first sight when Ally jumped out of her little cat carrier. A few months later, Mom dressed me up in a tux, and my wife Ally in a beautiful wedding dress, and we got married! That was 8 years ago, and we have been together ever since.
“My life is good here in Menlo, as our neighbors all know me now and help Mom keep an eye on me when I go outside. I love pool parties and having people around to rub up against and talk to. I hear I am quite the talker. I also love to greet dogs and kiss them on their noses. For some reason this always seems to freak the dog out, but after a while they realize that is just how Rockie is. I also love little kids, and anyone else who will rub my belly, but my favorite place of all, is on my Mom’s lap, snuggling with her and giving her kisses. I have a good life here in Menlo.”
Photo by Chris Gulker