I don’t have any pictures of Blackster, but just imagine a small black tom cat with ragged ears, and that is him. There isn’t anything remarkable about him--except that he decided I am his best friend.
Even that wouldn’t be such a big deal, except just last winter, he was a feral cat that would visit our barn. We have a lady that comes out every day just to feed the cats. Her name is Carol. By feeding him and talking to him, she got him gentle enough that she could pet him a little bit.
Ellen and I don’t feed the cats--they get plenty of food, and most of them are rather fat. I always talk to Princess, the cantankerous empress of the barn. Many times, I would sit with her in the winter time so she could warm her paws. She can be so unpredictable, that only her old owner who brought her to our barn, Ellen and I are the only ones that spend much time with her.
The feral black cat that they named Blackie would see me with Princess. Over time, he got closer and closer to me. I think he decided I was safe because Princess liked me. Soon, I was able to pet him. That is when I decided that Blackie was not a name fit for a tom cat. I started calling him Blackster. Once I did that, he fell in love with me.
On the evenings that I feed the horses, he finds me when he hears my voice to greet me. He, himself, has just a tiny meow--the kind that most of the time you only see his mouth move. He will then follow me from barn to barn as I feed the horses. Sometimes he will greet me when I come back with Ranger on his walk. II will pet him most of the time as I walk by. Our problem? Princess, the tyrant doesn’t think he should be with me and will try to chase him away. She wants me to pet her instead of him.
I try to reserve a few minutes just to pet and talk to him--and that only works until Princess finds us. He just loves when I sit and talk to him. He has never tried to climb on my lap, though. The time I have spent with him has helped him feel more comfortable around other people, too, He is still skittish with them, but he is getting better all the time. He likes Ellen, too, but not as much as he likes me. He even likes me more than he likes Carol--who feeds him.
He is really a nice fellow, and if I didn’t have Thunder--a cat who is meant to be an only cat--I would be tempted to take him home. The cats who live at our barn do have a good life, though, and I get to see him plenty when I am out there.