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A Day in the Life on Roatan: The Kittens

What a week it has been in our household! Monday evening just before sunset, we took Lina for a walk in the neighborhood. Hearing some meowing in the bushes, the Irish-Colombian went to investigate. Three little kittens were sitting on top of a large plastic bag. We assume that was the vessel in which they were left in this location off the side of the road in the jungle. Sadly, that type of abandonment happens often here. And as I found out a few days later, two other kittens had been found in the same area earlier in the day, making this five total that someone decided to simply throw away. I can’t even fathom that line of thinking.

As it was already starting to get dark and we had Lina becoming more and more curious, I ran her (ok, I dragged our lazy island dog) home, grabbed flashlights and a pillowcase, and ran back to grab the kittens. Nearly two hours later, after scaring the bejeezus out of each of them with our coaxing and chasing them with flashlights in hand, we had all three safely in our possession.

Foster kittens in Roatan

Since then, they have taken over our home and our lives. But they do it so damn adorably!

Before you say anything, no, we are not keeping them. We have been trying to find them each a good home – or ideally send at least two of them together.

So given all this information, here is what a day in my life on Roatan looked like this week…

An early morning wake-up in Roatan usually entails birds chirping, sunshine streaming through the window, and maybe Lina stirring if she’s feeling particularly rambunctious. This morning, I woke up to the bizarre sounds of the toilet being banged every few seconds, and things falling and bouncing around in the bathroom. Yes, the kittens were wide awake and feeling much more rambunctious than any of us.

We’ve kept them in the bathroom for multiple reasons: first, they are stinky because all they do is eat and poop. Second, they are good about using the litterbox….most of the time. Third, there is absolutely nowhere to hide in there, which is apparently their all-time favorite game. They are little and fit into every small crack and crevice, so the bathroom is the only suitable location to keep the three musketeers for now.

While I’ve cleared nearly everything out of there, a few things remain, much to their playful delight. These are the noises we hear early in the morning as our eyes still adjust to the daylight but our ears are assaulted with clambering and banging.

Lina is not at all amused.

The Irish-Colombian grins as he heads off to work, and I mutter something along the lines of “I hope your divers are like herding cats today, just so you know how I feel!” Alas, he has great divers and enjoyable dives while I clean up poop.

The kittens all received their first shots and deworming medication yesterday, and they were extraordinarily calm and very well behaved during the whole trip to the vet and during their check-ups. I think they were saving the attitude for me today.

I decided to let them venture into the living room to explore and see how they behaved. I also forgot how much kittens like to climb and scurry and hide…so I spent the first hour or so chasing them around to block holes, tie up curtains, remove cords and any string-like items, etc.

Finally, they seemed to get comfortable enough to not be running around like mad and they all relaxed into sleeping positions. By this point, I’d already introduced their smell to Lina, and her smell to them. They had seen each other from a safe distance and neither seemed particularly interested in the other party. So, I thought it was time to experiment. Lina had been relaxing on the porch all morning – as she is wont to do – but I coaxed her inside and held her collar while she watched the kittens. All I could picture was how she could eat one in a single bite. Eek…

Dog meets kittens

“I promise I won’t eat them, I just want to sniff them…and eat their food.”

But for all my stressing about her behavior potentially maiming or killing these little furballs, she proved once again how docile she is. She took a nap next to them. Not cuddling them, mind you, because then I probably would’ve melted and kept all three of them. But she was near them, and she allowed them to sniff her without freaking out, so I consider it a success!

By this point it’s afternoon and I’ve accomplished nothing resembling productive work. Back into the bathroom go the mini-furballs so I can sit down and focus for a few hours before I need to head out. Lina takes herself to the beach for a bit and the kittens take over the bathroom sink.

Kittens found on Roatan

A few nights each week, I work at the front desk of The Beach House hotel in West End. It’s a pretty great little gig to be honest! I get to chit-chat with people, taking me out of my usual chattering at the dog and now the kittens, and I am also reminded of the many different questions tourists ask. The hotel is located right at the entrance to West End and serves as the main information point for the area. Despite the fact that I’d already lived here for so long before working there, I’ve now learned so much more about all the available activities on the island!

A mere four hours later, I’m heading out of the office and over to our favorite restaurant, Roatan Oasis, to celebrate a friend’s birthday. One delicious duck curry later, and we were headed out to karaoke night at Blue Marlin, which lasted approximately 20 minutes before the Irish-Colombian looked at me with the most tired of eyes and we called it a night.

I may have herded cats all day, but I suppose he did have a much more taxing job keeping people alive underwater. He’s pretty impressive like that.

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