The Lunch Cat


Mia Blattmachr

Author’s Note: Don’t bombard Greenland Pet Supplies/Grooming asking to see the cat if you aren’t a paying customer. However, the other places I listed are always more than happy for people to visit them. Especially Johnny’s place!

Every day during my 6th period lunch, I take a short walk down the block to “Greenland Pet Supplies/Grooming”, conveniently tucked behind the Wine and Spirits store on 61st and West End Avenue. I am greeted with a half smile by the cashier as I make my way towards the register. Simon, the residential cat, spots me and puts his front paws on my shoulders. Simon more often than not climbs on my shoulders and purrs for pets. It’s something to look forward to during my busy school day.

In April, I made my first ever visit to the pet store after school to buy a harness, leash,  and dog bowls for the dog my family was adopting. As I was entering the store, there was a cat hut sitting on the side of the railing. I looked into it, and a black and white furry head stuck out to greet me. Throughout my 6 years of attending WESS, I had never known there was a residential cat there. I was happily surprised when Simon immediately jumped on my shoulders, reminding me of my grandparents’ late cat that used to do the same. I set my dog supply shopping duties to the side and spent some time with Simon. 

Ever since, I take time out of my week to visit cats I know of that live in nearby stores. There’s Johnny, the residential pet store cat at The Pet Market on 109th street and Broadway, California at Pet Central on 100th street and Broadway, and even a bodega cat that lives at my local deli (I don’t know her name, but the few times I see her standing at the doorway I always stop to greet her). There’s even a tortoise and a talking parrot named Panama that I’ll visit occasionally at Petqua on 98th and Broadway. 

There’s something very wholesome about visiting pets around the city. Even though I have a cat and a dog, I’ll never pass up an opportunity to see another furry friend. I encourage everyone else to do the same; I promise it will make your day (assuming you aren’t deadly allergic).