Tag: Cats of University Heights

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The (Honorary) Cats of University Heights: Comber

For the first Christmas in years, our daughter wasn’t in crisis. She started living in a woman’s group house and finally appeared on an upward trajectory. To celebrate her progress, my wife and I prepared a lovely assortment of meaningful gifts, which we dropped off before continuing on to the ocean and one of our more memorable holidays since the last decade. Then, unexpectedly, daughter left the residence and program on her 28th day—not thirty or the recommended sixty. Another year ends in uncertainty, with devastating foreshadowing.

Trying to revive some good feeling from Christmas Day, I present a most remarkable ginger kitty seen during our Pacific Beach adventure. He hunched in the sand alongside the paved path, mostly unfettered by bikers, runners, skaters, and walkers whizzing by.

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The Cats of University Heights: Sphynxes

After celebrating what would turn out to be the last Christmas with my father-in-law (2016), I walked down Campus Ave. from his apartment towards the elementary school. There I encountered four kitties—Comet, Herman, Roman, and Willow—romping around supervised by their owner. JoAnn had lived in the same studio apartment for 19 years—10 of them with Roman. Neither of us could guess that months later, in early 2017, she and her brood would be compelled to move.

The property’s management executed what I unaffectionately call a renoviciton. Tenants vacated because of renovation that would later impose rent increases. Fast forward six years to Dec. 25, 2022. As my wife and I passed by the same rental complex, one of us spied a cat smushed against the screen of a vertically-long window positioned by the door of the same apartment. Yes, where JoAnn and her four felines once called home.

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The Cats of University Heights: Scamp

In the same yard where I first saw Thin and Slim, another black and white kitty appeared on Dec. 15, 2022. The trio are quite possibly from the same litter. However, this one was skittish rather than friendly. But, hey, doesn’t sibling personality often vary—vastly sometimes—even among humans?

I used iPhone 13 Pro to capture the Featured Image. Vitals: f/2.8, ISO 32, 1/99 sec, 77mm; 12:59 p.m. PST. Nickname: Scamp (for no particular reason).

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The (Honorary) Cats of University Heights: Fancy

The number of new neighborhood sightings is low, while that of missing kitties is unusually high—along with warnings about wandering coyotes. Sadly, and surely, there must be a connection. Across Texas Street, into parts of North Park, I see more felines than is typical—and further distance from canyons is some protection. That said, Queenie, one of the prettiest putty-tats designated Honorary, is missing and, based on circumstantial evidence, presumed to have been taken by a coyote.

I have a backlog of Honorarians to add to the series, including the beauty photographed today. She (or he) joins sixteen others: BooBuddiesChill, CoalEnvy, Guapo, LonesomeJadeMonaMoophie, Ninja, Promise, QueenieSammy, Shakey, and Tom and Jerry. Darth Mew initially belonged to the group, until later turning up in University Heights.

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The Cats of University Heights: Jet

Early afternoon, Oct. 23, 2022, I came across two shorthairs that quite literally played cat and mouse in the yard where once lived Pee-Pee. Among the first several shots, the black looks away. The Featured Image is the last portrait taken, after the beastie turned my way and settled down to await what you can’t see: Nutmeg, who is supremely camouflaged behind the growth along the wall.

I used iPhone 13 Pro for this one, which vitals are: f/2.8, ISO 32, 1/214 sec, 77mm; 12:10 p.m. PDT. Nickname: Jet.

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The Cats of University Heights: Mariner

I occasionally worry that indoor cats will lose their outdoor views, if their owners disapprove of my camera work. That concern is why the Featured Image is converted monochrome from color and location isn’t given; somewhat protects privacy of the residents. Because for months, I passed by this house and could somewhat see the cat tree behind the glass; nothing more. But then, for the first—and only—time (so far), the window was open and the black and white visible; Oct. 22, 2022, which was a lovely autumn (if such season exists in San Diego) day. I want the kitty to enjoy many more.

This fine feline is the one-hundred-second seen behind either window or door—that’s out of 515 profiles since the series started in October 2016. I used iPhone 13 Pro to shoot the portrait. Vitals: f/2.8, ISO 80, 1/99 sec, 77mm; 5:01 p.m. PDT.

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The (Honorary) Cats of University Heights: Boo

Three consecutive honorary kitties might make you wonder if there aren’t many more in the neighborhood to present. Oh, there are. Coincidental circumstance is reason for this trio. Nothing more.

My wife and I walked to the alley where yesterday afternoon a lonesome tabby hung out at a building site. We hoped to see the animal, but a construction crew prattled about, ensuring no sensible putty would stay anywhere nearby. That said, Annie pointed out a different shorthair lurking about half way there. How lucky! A black cat. On Halloween!

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The (Honorary) Cats of University Heights: Lonesome

While walking along Madison towards Texas, I spontaneously changed route down the Arizona alley. Approaching Monroe, I came upon a tabby nestled in the dirt of a recently cleared construction site. Something is being built.

My mistaken first impression: The kitty crouched down in stalking repose. But approaching, I could see the cat waited for something, or someone, else. The tiger mewed pleadingly but didn’t come near, and I wondered: Was the cat’s home the structure that no longer is there? Because that’s my second impression—the animal waiting for its owners to come. Is someone abandoned?

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The (Honorary) Cats of University Heights: Shakey

The series‘ fourteenth honorary member—meaning seen outside the neighborhood’s official boundaries—joins: BuddiesChill, CoalEnvy, GuapoJadeMonaMoophie, Ninja, Promise, QueenieSammy, and Tom and Jerry. Darth Mew initially belonged to the group, until later turning up in University Heights. My wife spotted the ginger in a front yard along Arizona, which is one block beyond UH into North Park—depending on who draws the map; some include the street, while others stop at Texas, which is what we follow.

Annie observed the shorthair to be trembling, which explains the nickname I have chosen (yes, I know preferred spelling is without “e”). The Featured Image comes from iPhone 13 Pro, on this cloudy Caturday. Vitals: f/2.8, ISO 64, 1/99 sec, 77mm; 9:29 a.m. PDT.