I met THE SWEETEST animal I have ever met today.
We drove 10 minutes down the road to the tiny town of Boykin, South Carolina. It is the birth place of the Boykin Spaniel and it's a historic little place where they make stone ground corn grits and corn meal with a water powered grinder, just like old times. There was a Civil war battle here and was at one time mostly burned to the ground. Now there is are two restaurants (The Boykin Company Grill, and Mill Pond Steakhouse), the grit mill and the "Broom Place".
The Broom Place is a little building where one woman makes handmade straw brooms and has been doing so for the past 45 years. She's quite a talker too, a very funny woman. We went there and ordered 2 brooms, which by the way have an approximate 2 year waiting time because she has so many on order and she is the only one who does this. However, she is not alone in her little building.
There is someone else there that I specifically had heard about, who I was very eager to see and meet. We walked in and I saw him right away, sitting on the floor beside the lady who was working on a broom. He has a very simple name, but a huge personality.
Meet, Mr. Kitty! (aka, the Boykin Broom Store Battle Cat)
He looks like a guy with a story, does he not? Let me share a little bit of his story. His caretaker says that he just showed up at the broom store one day, he wasn't outwardly friendly and wouldn't let her touch him, but he was more than happy to eat the food that she offered. He hung around and became the store cat of sorts. Then one day things turned scary.
About 9 months ago, the lady arrived in the morning to see Mr. Kitty laying unconscious, barely breathing and covered in blood, on the porch in front of the door. She didn't know if he was going to make it, or what had even happened, but she was going to do everything she could to help him. His ears were both shredded to the point that they were barely attached, he had wounds and cuts all over his body and a giant slash across his neck. She said that when she picked him up she had to support his head to prevent any further damage. She got him in a carrier and shuttled him to the vet. The vet did vast amounts of surgery on this little fella. He sewed his ears back together, stitched up his neck and all the other places that needed stitching. Thankfully, they were able to put Mr. Kitty back together again. The vet believes that he was brutally attacked by another animal, I wonder what that animal looked like at the end of that battle, because this little dude is clearly a fighter.
Now he is back in his rightful place in the Broom Place, sharing lunch with the broom lady. You can see that his ears are healed but are slightly deformed, he walks with a limp, and his tongue sticks out a bit, he still has stitches under his left ear, so he is not completely healed up, but he's getting there. This little fella though, he is beyond friendly now, if there is a word that means extra friendly, that describes Mr. Kitty. I fell in love with him (don't tell William), oh my gosh, he is so sweet! It's like he's just overjoyed to be in a place where he is safe and loved and that he survived that terrible ordeal. His purr is cranked up to 11, its so loud.
He is certainly living the good life. When you walk on the porch of the store, you see a food bowl and a little house with hay in it, there is at least one pillow for him out there as well. Most recently he has taken up residence in an empty box on a shelf next to the cash register (just like any other kitty, always finding the empty box).
I will be going back to visit this amazing war veteran, and maybe even take him some Temptations Treats.
William's opinion seemed somewhat different than mine, he immediately smelled this other cat on me, (Mr. Kitty did have a certain aroma to him) and walked the other way. He did the same thing to the WB, it was obvious that he wasn't pleased about this betrayal, but I'm sure he'll get over it once he gets his Meow Mix this evening.