Taking Back What's Ours- Feral Cats And All

Before Katrina, my husband and I rented a two story double in the Freret business corridor. Back then, it wasn't the "restaurant row" hot spot that is now. There were a few family owned businesses lining the thoroughfare, but the street was a shadow of what it is today, commerce wise. Regardless, we loved our neighborhood and the house.

Like many neighborhoods, we also had our fair share of roaming cat colonies, with our own brood of six born on the front porch. Everyone got fixed, and eventually the group dwindled down to two cats- Runty and Tigre. These felines aren't your average alley cats- they'd come into the house, begging us to pet them. Since our landlord at the time didn't allow pets, this was the closet we could get to having our own. We looked after them for a few years, until Katrina hit. The neighborhood got substantial water, with several neighbors having to rebuild their homes.

But the cats survived, and were patiently waiting our return. We had moved out of state after Katrina, having lived out west for a little over 3 years. Enough time had passed, and New Orleans pulled us back in.

Fast forward to 2009. We were back in NOLA, living here for a year when we decided to hit up the Freret Market one Saturday. We hadn't really been back on the street too much- it was too painful to see our old beloved house with other people living in it. Even though we had just rented it, it always felt like ours. Call it kismet, but that same day we hit up the market we saw a "For Sale" sign on the house. And who was sitting in the front yard? One of our cats. We got ourselves a real estate agent the next day, and two months later our cats greeted us with a "Where have you been?". Call it luck, fate, or whatever you'd like, but not even a natural disaster could keep us from the house that belonged to us.

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“Taking Back What's Ours- Feral Cats And All,” Hurricane Digital Memory Bank, accessed December 6, 2022, https://hurricanearchive.org/items/show/45930.