Paws and Pie

A couple weeks ago a local Detroit animal shelter brought dogs, cats, and other mammals to the first floor of my office building downtown (as well as free pie, but that’s another story). It was an absolute treat to watch these creatures work their magic and transform otherwise stoic all-business coworkers into piles of mushy mush.

I was also having a bit of a sad day, and a teammate told me I specifically needed to go down there to the event, and find a guy named Sebastian.

Sure, sure, I thought. I’ll go check him out, let him sniff my finger, try to bring some calm energy into what is certainly a stressful day of being visited by thousands of people.

I got downstairs, and he was the first one in the row. Bright orange with a red bandana around his neck, calm, content, happy. Feelings that I could see happening for me around the bend, beyond the wave, but weren’t quite there yet.

He looked up at me as I approached his tent, then walked over to the zipper, practically pointing at it. The volunteers told us we could open any of the enclosures if we wanted to connect with the animals — the rule was to sanitize before and after, and treat them as we’d want to be treated.

So I unzipped the top, as Sebastian instructed.

I’ve never seen a cat wiggle quite like this one — you’d think we’d just turned on disco music and he was John Travolta. This way and that, rubbing along my hand, on my forearm, and I kid you not — he wagged his tail when you pet him.

I started giggling with delight, like a child. Like a happy, amazed, content child.

A reminder that she was still in there.

Farkle and Zoe had me on strict orders not to add anybody else to our family right now, otherwise I’m fairly certain I would have been claimed that day. In a way, I think I was anyway.

Meanwhile, if the rumors are true, every animal was adopted by the end of the event. Several people on my floor adopted more than one.

I didn’t hear who wound up with Sebastian. I hope it was someone half as amazing as he is.

Shot on Pixel 6 Pro.

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