It is almost unthinkable. We have adopted the tiny grey cat and named him Simpkin, after the cat in Beatrix Potter's The Tailor of Gloucester. He's a stray, probably three months old. He's spent two nights indoors now. It's already getting cold. 

I have never owned an animal, and never tended to a little life. There is a surprising surge of joy to find Simpkin waiting for me outside, or to have him fold himself snugly (smugly) and insistently into my lap. It is astounding that we, personally, are able save him from growing ill and freezing to death over the winter. 

His eyes are the brightest blue and tawniest gold. He has faint tiger stripes on the end of his tail. He has survived all alone all summer, but now we are taking him in. I am deeply glad.