Smokie belongs to the little girl next door, but his home is in Colver Park.
Smokie is gray and has a crooked tail. A most unusual cat, he loves children and has no fear of dogs or adults.
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All day long, voices in the park call out, "Look, here's Smokie."
The little ones throw him over their shoulders, and he hangs there like a wet noodle. He touches noses with his favorite dogs. Misty is one that always goes out to greet him. Smokie joins in the ballgames, too.
My house faces the park, so I have a wonderful view of all the animals and children who play there.
Smokie loves my big cat, Oscar, and comes every morning to have breakfast with him. I have a cat door, and Smokie isn't bashful about using it at any time. He usually shows up at lunchtime, too, then naps in the afternoon. He has a special chair that he claims as his own.
When he gets hungry, he can open the pantry door. I keep the food there, and he can't get into the container, but there is always hope.
One day Smokie and I were ready to walk to the park, and this darling, little 5-year-old ran up and grabbed him. I told her, "His name is Smokie," and she was quick to give me this look and said, "I know."
Did I mention that he has a collar with a heart, his name and a telephone number? His family probably had lots of calls because the tags reads, "If I am in Colver Park, I am not lost."
Anyway, the little girl asked me if I was the grandma, and I guess I am. My goal in life, actually.
So if you are in Colver Park, be kind and loving to our little friend. He likes everyone and expects the same from others.
Joy reader Melva Smith lives in Phoenix.