Max encourages us to learn more about other's lives and to find a way to help those needing our help. At the end of his adventures, He always finds his way home. Home Sweet Home.
Are you ready for an adventure? If you answered yes, put your sneakers on, take a grown-ups hand, and get going!
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Max's TaleHome Sweet Home
By Victoria Jachimczyk
AuthorHouseCopyright © 2012 Victoria Jachimczyk
All right reserved.
Chapter OneHi, my name is Max. I am a cat. I am an orange cat with short hair. I have some white in my fur. My mom says I am a creamy color. My eyes are kind of like oranges with black dots in the middle. I have a pink spot on my nose. I'm in great shape because I climb trees, run through the woods, and jump over logs. I love being outside all day.
I live in a small town called Douglas. It's in the state of Massachusetts and in the country called the United States of America. I know this only because I saw it written on some papers about me when I went to the veterinary office for my checkup. I had to get a shot to protect me from getting sick. I was nervous, but Dad held me tight. It turned out okay.
My first home was with my brothers and sisters; I think it was in a box. I don't know what town or state the box was in. But it was warm, and I drank milk from my mother.
I can't remember when it happened, but I found myself living outside next to a restaurant. I was so cold and lonely. People were sad when they saw me living without a home. "It's against the law," I heard someone say. They would give me scraps of food and sometimes a dish of milk. It was very different from the box. I wouldn't want any other cat to experience it.
Then some people came and put me in a cage. I didn't know what was happening, and I was scared. The people said they wanted to find a home for me. That sounded like a plan I could live with.
I was taken to a place called a shelter. It was to be my temporary home. It was warm and there was lots of food. The name of the shelter is Community Cat Connection. It's in Webster, Massachusetts. A really nice lady owns the shelter. Many other cats lived there too. All the people who worked there were very friendly, and they all wanted to pat me. They told me I was cute. I just wanted to sleep. I wasn't sure what to expect, but I knew it was better than living outside in the cold.
One day, a black cat came over to me and started licking my fur. She told me she once had kittens, and they had all grown and left to live on their own. She knew that I was sad and needed to be taken care of. I liked the attention very much.
She told me her name was Onyx. She was black with silky, shiny fur. Her eyes looked like emeralds—green and big. Onyx was there to comfort me with love and warmth.
I lived at the shelter until a man and a woman came one day. They walked right over to where Onyx and I were sitting. They were smiling and trying to pat us. I was okay with it, but Onyx was very scared. She had never known a human family, because she had always lived outside. She was called a feral cat.
These people—the shelter lady called them Lou and Vicky—really liked me and wanted to take me to their home. They had seen my picture on the shelter's website. I heard one of the workers ask them if they would like to take Onyx too. She explained how close we were and feared that Onyx would be very sad if I were to leave her. They said, "We weren't planning to, but sure!" with big smiles. They put us in cages and took us to their home.
Onyx and I have been living with Lou and Vicky for four years now. A big dog named Bruski lives with us. He is a chocolate Lab. He's much bigger than Onyx and me, and his fur is brown. I'm not trying to sound mean, but Bruski has a really big nose.
He thinks it's funny to chase me, but I'm not scared, because he can't catch me. Besides, he's my brother now. I know he loves me and only wants to play.
Onyx watches over Bruski because he has epilepsy, which makes him have seizures. Seizures make him shake uncontrollably and fall to the floor. It doesn't last long, because he takes medicine from the doctor. Onyx likes to drag pillows next to his head so he doesn't get hurt. She's such a mom!
Onyx used to be very scared and always stayed under the bed, but now she's happy moving around the house and being patted by these two nice humans. She likes to nibble on Mom's houseplants. Mom doesn't even get mad. One day Mom actually presented Onyx with her very own plant.
As for me these days, I am an active cat. I get plenty of food, love, and attention. We have a great life in a wonderful home.
When I first arrived at my new home, I would sit by the back door in the mornings and meow and meow. As much as I love sleeping on a comfortable bed with soft pillows to cuddle or a sun-drenched windowsill to lounge around on, I longed to be in the fresh air. Mom realized I really wanted to go outdoors.
Then it happened. She let me out. She seemed nervous about this and even told me not to go far. I am so grateful that Mom was able to let me do something I needed to do, even though it was a difficult decision for her to make.
I just love roaming the yard, chasing birds, butterflies, and chipmunks all day. I learned so many neat things about the other animals' ways of life and homes.
At the end of my daily adventures, I always look forward to coming home. You should see the look on Mom's face when she sees me sitting on the back porch. I'm not sure who is happier, Mom or me.
While watching a chipmunk one afternoon, a great idea came to me. I would go to work with my dad in the morning.
You see, my dad has a very important job. He wears a badge and carries a gun to work. I know his job has something to do with law enforcement, animals, and the ocean. Since I had never been to the ocean and Dad goes there every day, I was ready to find out exactly what he did.
The next morning I meowed at the door, and Mom let me out. This time, instead of searching for unsuspecting chipmunks or birds feeding at one of Mom's feeders in the yard, I decided to sneak inside Dad's car and take a trip with him to the ocean. Once inside the car, I fell asleep quickly. I always fall asleep in cars.
I woke up when his car stopped. As soon as the door opened, I scooted out. I didn't think Dad would be too happy about me being this far from home without Mom knowing.
I was on an adventure! Wow, wow. This place was very different from my home. It smelled salty. The air was sticky. My fur started to get curly. I didn't see any big trees, green grass, or little, brightly colored birds flying around. On both sides of me were boats. Really big boats! And water everywhere. There were so many sounds: horns blaring, chains clanking, and flags flapping.
People were dressed in yellow, rubber jumpsuits and hauling large containers on and off the boats. Everyone was working hard and shouting over the engine noises. I looked up and saw big, white birds flying overhead. They squawked and squawked loudly. I was freaked out!
I was at the ocean, more specifically, the harbor in New Bedford, Massachusetts.
I was walking along the docks, where the fishing boats were tied up and all the activities were taking place when I looked down into the water. There he was. Looking right at me with a big smile. Someone was looking right at me with a big smile.
"Hey, what are you?" I asked.
"I'm a striped bass. You know, a fish," he answered.
I had no idea what a fish was, but I was starting to figure it out. I told him my name, and he told me his.
Excerpted from Max's Tale by Victoria Jachimczyk Copyright © 2012 by Victoria Jachimczyk. Excerpted by permission of AuthorHouse. All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
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