Just one month ago, a 500-gram bundle of mischief and joy came into our lives on the streets of the stunning Ukrainian city of Lviv. As you may remember from my earlier post chronicling Cocoa’s adventures with us, the kitten’s story commenced in a sad fashion, when he was discarded behind a series of dumpsters right before our eyes. But I’m here to provide a very happy update.
After our 1,000 km. (600 mile) journey overland together from Ukraine to Germany on trains, trams, and taxis, we set to work to market Cocoa’s availability. We blogged and posted social media updates, we posted paper flyers all over my parents’ village in Germany’s Alps, hoping that a loving family would step forward to adopt him. We’re grateful to our family members, longtime friends and those kind connections in the blogosphere who helped spread the word about little Cocoa.
One dear blog reader, Claudine, was quick to step forward and express an interest in being Cocoa’s forever home. Having just lost a beloved feline of her own, and as a hard-working cheerleader for the world’s less-fortunate animals, we knew that Claudine and her family would be the perfect fit. After two years of correspondence, Shawn, Claudine, her daughter and I met in person for the first time one week ago, on the edge of Germany’s Bodensee. We shared laughs and tears at a café overlooking the picturesque lake, and then handed little Cocoa over.
We miss the little mischief maker, of course, but the knowledge that he is living the good life in the Swiss Alps makes us smile. When Shawn and I initially found him, Shawn said that Cocoa would “one day, make someone very happy.” We’re delighted that he’s bringing Claudine and her family so much joy. To think – he was garbage to one, but another loving family was willing to drive hours for him!
“Awake your soul to happy memories.”
― Lailah Gifty Akita
Some readers on social media expressed anger at the anonymous man who threw Cocoa away, and responded that they would like to take violent action against him if they could. My response? While I agree that his actions were heartless and inhumane, I don’t condone violence as a solution to this problem. But if you feel moved in any way by Cocoa’s story, or by the plight of the many animals on the streets in every corner of the world, I would recommend making a donation to an animal charity or volunteering at your local shelter. We have family members and friends who even sponsor a dog or cat in need to have it spayed or neutered, thus helping to control the homeless animal population.
The day before Cocoa left us, we did a mini photo shoot with the photogenic little guy. Though Cocoa was in a playful mood and moving as fast as lightning, which was not so conducive to photo-snapping, Mother Nature cooperated by flooding the kitchen with warm light. I hope Cocoa’s soaking up the Swiss sunshine as I type this. Thanks again, Claudine and family, for treating Cocoa like a little prince!