Oh, a storm is threat'ning
My very life today
If I don't get some shelter
Oh yeah, I'm gonna fade away
~The Rolling Stones, Gimme Shelter
On Thursday, January 10 I attended Architects for Animals in New York City. What a great experience. Not just to see the very cool and innovative outdoor housing for feral cats on display, but to be in a roomful of people who really care about the welfare of ferals in this urban area.
Nat and I often feel alone in our crusade to help these beautiful beings. We know that we are not, but in our little corner of Jersey City, the plight is difficult. There are lots burdened with chemicals left behind decades ago. There's the remnants of the now mystical 111 building, with the out of commission Power House looming as the backdrop. There's abandoned and partially used warehouses. And lots of construction forthcoming. This is the neighborhood where our beloved ferals eat, play, sleep and roam.
We were delighted to meet several wonderful cat bloggers and advocates while at the event. They've renewed our hope that we can indeed connect across city and state lines, rivers, and other perceived barriers to rescue and place those kitties who are ready to come off the streets. For those who can't be domesticated, we are learning more about how to make their lives safe, comfortable and healthy as possible.
Thank you to Debbie of Glogirly.com for making virtual introductions! New friends, new adventures in cats and blogging....we wish you could have been with us!
Pictured, Left to Right: Carine, Texas, a cat in New York; Tracey and Kevin from Animal Shelter Volunteer Life; Layla from Cat Widsom 101 and next to me, Tamar from I Have Cat. (picture credit to Tamar--thank you!)
Natalie and I call ourselves PAD Paws. PAD is the nickname for the Powerhouse Arts District. Together, we've rescued and placed close to 20 cats from the neighborhood. Some are living in our apartments, others have transitioned to homes with friends or family. We continue to feed ferals on the streets, and I promise that our next rescue will be captured on video. I wish that we had pictures of the underbelly of my building when we rescued Manhattan in February of 2010; or of the 36 hour mission to get Bessie, Lulu and The Captain in July of 2011 from a hole in a warehouse. I am especially disappointed that we have no documentation of the last 6 rescues over the Thanksgiving holiday (Natalie carried those out with no help from me--so I easily could have been the videographer).
Squeedunk will be undergoing a massive reconstruction. New look, some new concepts to tell the important stories. Coming soon...
And, probably my favorite design built by Barteluce Architects to fit a specific space and blend in, so no one would realize kitties use it for shelter: