Category Archives: Oh Presley!

Fifteen Minutes in a Cat Cafe

cat cafe JapanLet me tell you about the time Naoto & I spent 300 yen each to play with a stranger’s cats.

It all happened by accident. I hadn’t planned on going to a cat cafe–yes, a cat cafe…where you pay a cover charge to enter and play with cats, not to eat them, thankfully. But one morning, while we were exploring Shimokitazawa and waiting for the stores and restaurants to open, we happened upon Cateriam. We decided it would be a funny thing to do, and it turns out, it was the best part of that day! cat cafe JapanOur three hundred yen allowed us fifteen minutes to play with, pet, and take pictures of the variety of cats. There were about a dozen or so cats in a large room with a couch, chairs, cat towers and other furniture for the humans and the cats. There were tons of toys to promote play and interaction with the cats, too. There was another customer in the cafe who appeared to be a regular. She stayed a lot longer than we did. There was a small menu with drink and snack options and a gift shop, too!

The cats had access to a little room where they could escape human contact and take a nap or eat, so they weren’t trapped socializing the whole time. All of the cats were really friendly (Presley could never be a cat cafe cat!) Some were hiding out, and others were more playful and social. They each had a name and you could tell that the cat cafe owner, Shigemori-san really cared about each one and knew their personalities well. cat cafe JapanIMG_3570cat cafecat cafe Japancat cafe JapanThis cat was a big ol’ ragdoll and just flopped into my arms when Shigemori-san handed him to me. cat cafe Japan kimberlyahcat cafe JapanI played with this furry one, but he wouldn’t give the ball back. cat cafe JapanDuring our visit, the owner told us to go into the bathroom to see something “interesting”. The cats were helping themselves to some water! I took a little video of this guy lapping it up.

Although the visit made us miss little Presley even more, we both enjoyed our cat fix and experiencing something that seemed very “Japan”. Thumbs up for the cat cafe! Cateriam cat cafe Japan

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Oh Presley…

Presley and meLast year, I celebrated Labor Day by mentioning Naoto’s hardworking spirit. While that is important, Labor Day has another special meaning around here. It is the day we got Presley.

Seven years ago today, our friend Bonnie gave us a tiny, scared, stray kitten that had been born in her barn. Bonnie didn’t ask us if we wanted a cat…she knew we needed a cat. young PresleyThe first few weeks were rough. Presley was (is) quite a handful. She didn’t want to cuddle. She hid out most of the time. She didn’t really like us. She only sat on my lap when I went to the bathroom. (Weird!) For those first few weeks, Naoto and I considered giving her back. We didn’t feel like she was happy, and we weren’t sure if we were truly cat people. (I had cats growing up, but Naoto never really had pets.) We didn’t want to hurt anyone’s feelings (especially Presley’s), so we mustered through. And gradually, we all got used to each other. Presley started coming around more, cuddling more, playing more. Naoto and I accepted our roles in care taking. (I told Naoto that ANY woman should not scoop the litter box, not just pregnant women. By the time he learned the truth, he was so used to scooping the box, he’d accepted it as his job for life.) We started accepting the fact that cat hair is forever.Naoto and PresleyNow we cannot imagine our lives without this little beast. Presley is still a little wild and she’s terrible with guests (oh, if only they would just leave her alone!) But with us, she’s sweet and charming and only misbehaves if she feels she’s lacking attention and play time. Since I’m home more, Presley has become “my” cat, often favoring me over Naoto. (It’s okay, because most people favor him over me.) She spends time at my feet or napping nearby on her scratching box. We play mid-day fetch and chase each other around the apartment. We open the mail together in the condo hallway. She comes to bed with me and sleeps at my feet at night and wakes me up with creepy stares in the morning. (Sometimes I do wonder if she’s planning to kill me.)

I feel so lucky that Bonnie brought Presley into our lives. presleyPresley and NaotoAnd, even though you might consider them “frenemies”, I know Naoto is thankful for Presley, too.

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