Recently when my grandpa was in town, he said, “Summer, would you like to go visit the animal shelter?”
“I would love to!” I screamed.
I had been begging my parents for a new kitten. As I ran upstairs to get changed, I saw my mom and dad looking at Grandpa.
I talked the whole way in the car. I could see Grandpa’s smile in the mirror as Dad kept saying, “Now, Summer, we are just looking.”
“I know, Dad,” I said, “but you’ll see when we get there! I know it!”
Arriving at the shelter, I ran through the front door. There were cats everywhere—in windows and small rooms. “Look, Dad!” I squealed. “That one is so cute!”
We picked out a yellow cat named Sims. A woman took us to a room where I could play with him. Sims was overweight and feisty. He even hissed at us.
Suddenly my grandpa said, “Summer, you’ve got to see this!” In a cage nearby a beautiful calico kitten was crying and reaching out her paw to me between the bars. I raced to her and touched her paw. She immediately started purring.
She’s perfect! I thought.
Dad looked at me and smiled. “Let’s bring her home,” he said.
My eyes filled with tears. “Are you sure?” I asked. I couldn’t believe it!
Reaching Out Again
When we got home, I introduced my kitten to my mom and older sisters. I named her Callie.
Callie liked playing both inside and outside, and she especially loved climbing trees. One afternoon Callie ran up a tree and wouldn’t come back down. She kept climbing higher and higher. All evening we stood at the tree calling for her, but she just stood on a branch reaching out her paw the way she did at the animal shelter.
Finally it got dark, and my parents made us go to bed. “She’ll come down,” they said. I had a hard time going to sleep that night.
The next morning Callie still hadn’t come down! She kept meowing and meowing.
My sister Morgan had a teacher who volunteered as a firefighter. After school we heard a fire truck pull up to our curb. Mr. Richardson and another firefighter named Johnny had come to rescue Callie!
The firefighter extended a huge ladder way up over our house! Then Johnny slowly walked out toward Callie. Callie tried to go to him, but the branches were too weak.
My sister Ally said, “Maybe we can use a sled for Callie to walk over.” Everyone thought this was a great idea. Ally got the sled and handed it to the firefighter.
Callie meowed and meowed. Finally she walked over the sled into the firefighter’s arms. She was safe!
As the ladder came slowly down, I was almost in tears. The firefighter handed Callie to me, and I didn’t let her go. I ran inside, and she ate and drank almost all of her food!
My cat, Callie, kept reaching out her paw because she knew she needed to be saved. We should keep doing that too!
—Summer Nash, 10, lives in Tennessee.
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