A year without Neko

I wrote the below text over a year ago, once our cat ran away in New York. A year and over three thousand miles later, now living on the west coast, I can honestly say that the move has been good for our family and we are happy here. And Neko’s memory will forever live on. Maybe one day we will think about getting another cat here in California. But Neko, like any loved one, is not easy to replace.


Over five years ago I finally gave in to my wife’s pleas for us to get a cat. We were in a small apartment at the time and I was hesitant at first. But I eventually agreed and we brought home a beautiful, mixed female cat from the local animal shelter. Her name in the shelter was Vixen. Once we brought her home, we named her Neko. That cat, thanks to her friendly and loving nature, soon became a good friend and a stable and fun part of our household. After living in two different apartments, my wife and I bought a house and in we moved in with our two daughters and cat (who, by the way, we have had longer than either one of our daughters). In our house, she had more room to roam, but also had easier access to get outside through the front door. The first time she escaped, I didn’t think I would see her again. But she soon came back and we cleaned her up. We then developed a scheme to keep her in the house as we were entering and leaving. But she still whined by the door at times, yearning for the adventure and excitement of a few hours outside.

Last week I was in Switzerland when Neko got out again. No one at home was concerned, as Neko had always come home before after escaping from the house. It was cold and dark and it was expected that she would return shortly. But today, more than a week after she sprinted down our front porch steps, she has yet to come back. I like to think that she might find her way back one day, but it has been unbearably cold and snowy. It is sad to think that Neko has either found a new home or is sadly dead. I can’t think of any other alternative, but hope she is okay wherever she is.

So this post is for her. Yes, I know Neko is a cat (and I swear I’m not a cat guy). But she was our cat and I took care of her more than anyone else in our house. She was a fun addition and I will miss her. Wherever you are Neko, know that we won’t forget you.