We’re in the midst of a worldwide pandemic, but Ziggy and Sammy Sue could care less.  They like variety in their canned food and we’re out of salmon and beef choices. I ignored their whining for one day, but it continued into the night and now at 6 AM they are victorious. 

In a few minutes, I’ll brave the sprinkling rain outside, take my life in my hands, and walk to the grocery store for their precious favorites.

Never mind that the governor has demanded we stay in place, or that I have a scant one-hour window at the big chain store to make this purchase. Seniors are allowed in from 7-8 AM, and it’s do or die time. Bad choice of words.

There’s a bag of dry food, kitty treats and other cans on the kitchen counter, but that means absolutely nothing to these two furballs. Fifteen pound Ziggy and five pound Sammy are rescues and food is their opiate. I am their dealer.

At the store, the line wraps around the parking lot to the street. No way to maintain the six feet of separation mandated in social distancing — we’d all be in the next town, or at least in the middle of the nearby eight-lane highway.

People are masked, gloved, silent. It might not be the end of the world, but it feels like it. I am too late for a basket or cart. I’ll just have to run in like a crazy person when the doors finally open, grab the right cans and wait in another long line to pay. Others will stand around me with mega packs of toilet paper (maybe), eggs (possibly), meat and pasta. I’ll just pathetically clutch these tins holding shreds of salmon and beef because the beasts don’t like pate style.

But the final joke will be on the cats. Their special delivery will be delayed because I’m including some junk food to get me through the next few days. Chips, cookies and chocolates. While they slurp their salmon, I’ll crunch my chips. Three can play this game!

Judith Ayn is a retired California attorney, currently hunkering down in Ventura County with two magnificent felines.

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