Yesterday after lunch and a quick stop at Eatzi's for bread, we pulled in for a Nicholsen-Hardie scope out. It's one of my most favorite places to visit and even if I don't buy a single thing, I still walk out happy. Specifically, I have enjoyed all the garden beauty and visited my cat friends.
Now way back when, there used to be two litter mates that were the in house live- in cat-greeters. They were Nic and Hardie and were quite a pair. According to the owner, they fought, they played, they chased each other and tore the place up after hours. It was a daily occurrence to unlock in the morning and have to clean up plants they'd chewed, plants and gifts they'd knocked off and broken playing chase, and that was in the days before they had as many gift items as they do now. During the day, they were mostly nice guys but no one cried much when they went to the big Cat Colony in the sky. (One actually got run over in the alley out back.)
Enter Frank (gray) and Sam (orange marmalade). Frank is the more laid back of the two and his main job is lounging. If lounging was ever an Olympic event, he'd bring home the Gold for sure. Fat and friendly, rarely is he spotted vertical and if he is, it's for one of two reasons. When it's cold, on some Sunday afternoons you used to find find him lying up front at the check out counter sprawled out by the printer. It was the epic spot for napping due to the warm air blowing on him from the printer, proximity to the staff, and all the attention he scored from customers. (He was also a welcome relief after seeing your purchase total and handing over your credit card.) His presence helped the sting, as you signed your life away.
Sam is, however, a different story. While he is just as fat, laid back, and lovable, he is a bit of a roamer and once loose, he is one bad hombre'. In other words, he is a c-a-t. They both have the run of the store after hours but because of the busy alley out back, cars, and delivery trucks, they go on lock down in the store office around noon. If Sam is not in the office by noon, the cat wrangling begins and can be ugly. He will not come when called, can't be tempted by food, takes off for parts known only to him, and arrives back whenever he damn well pleases and that can be anywhere from 10 pm to midnight, depending on his mood. Apparently the staff has learned this the hard way and if you let him out, you are that night's Cat Wrangler. If customers ask, they are welcome to go visit him or Frank in the office--just don't let them out--especially Sam. You will not be popular if you do.
Even with Sam's penchant for roaming, and Frank's narcoleptic napping, these two are a definite improvement over the previous pair. They don't fight, tear up, or even chew all that much except maybe the fresh catnip You gotta love any store that has resident animals. Meow.