The cat was thought to be a female so I named it Shiba or Shibeh, a term used in the sense of playfully mischievous, an endearing term. When Shibeh turned out to be a boy, I had to change its name; meet Shibo.
Shibo, a tabby kitten was shy for the first few days but soon would own the house. Cats are notorious for that and Shibo did not disappoint. Shibo also thought he was human, whenever I sat down to have a meal he wanted to share; he wanted me to share my food with him even though I never asked to share his. He had a love affair with anything dairy, be it milk, cheese, yogurt and of course ice cream.
On occasion I would get some ice cream, the kind that comes on a stick, get one from the freezer and go to the living room, sit on the couch, lift my feet up on the coffee table and get ready to relax and enjoy my ice cream.
Shibo is already there, well not even 5 seconds after I sit down on the couch he is there and keeping his eyes on the prize. He's on the coffee table or in my lap with his eyes fixed on the ice cream that is now disappearing, lick by lick, bite by bite. Shibo tilts his head as the ice cream continues to disappear and I can sense that he is getting anxious. Sure enough he lets a little moan out accompanied by a paw movement. He lifts a paw and gently reaches for the ice cream without touching it, he knows his limits. Then he comes a little forward and persists. There is little ice cream left on the stick now and a little meow comes out. Shibo knows though that he always gets his share. How could I not give him his treat. Now Shibo! I offer him the stick with the vanilla ice cream on it - cats by the way should not be fed anything chocolate as it will make them sick and even kill them - and I hold the stick while he licks away. I turn the stick to the other side and he finishes off the rest in no time and gives the wooden stick a couple of extra licks just to be sure that nothing is left there. Once satisfied that there is no more ice cream he loses his anxious mode and settles in my lap or next to me for a little nap or some petting followed by some heavy breathing, purring happily.
Shibo was the only cat out of six that I have that enjoyed and demanded dairy products. Mr Sheebs, another nick name for Shibo, used to do many unique things: like fetching a little soft ball. He could do that for an hour and not get tired of the game.. well when he was younger. He would fetch that little soft red ball and drop it in front of me and then find a chair or a corner to hide behind and anticipate the next throw. His hind legs would be tapping the floor making his hips look like they are moving from side to side, faster and faster as the moment of the throw, as he anticipated it draws to a close and off he goes, the ball goes up in the air and he jumps and with one move of his right or left paw blocks it. Rewind, repeat, loop mode.
There was a time when I had a regular job and I would come home almost at a regular hour. Shibo would be waiting at the bedroom window that is closer to the back patio door that I used to enter the house. As soon as I disappeared from his view, I would have 4 more steps to go before I got to the door and opened it. Shibo would already there even though he would have to jump off the window sill run out of that room, turn a sharp left, and another sharp left and go towards the heavy glass sliding door. I would take off my shoes and massage his belly with my foot. He knew the routine and he would lay on his back and enjoy the little rub. All of a sudden he starts playing rough and grabs my foot with his front paws while his hind legs start painfully kicking me. I'd laugh and manage to get lose.
If I was sidetracked with a phone call or something when I first entered the house Shibo would chase me position himself next to me and then would paw me, he would paw my arm repeatedly until I gave him attention in the form of petting and eye contact. If I'm too close to him he would rub his face against mine. For Shibo that was love, recognition renewed daily and often.
The thing he (not it) did often that was human like motion and sound was when he looked me straight in the eyes and his head moved up and down slightly accompanied by a gentle emmmh sound. I suppose it meant different things depending on the time, I would like to eat now, how about some ice cream (you worked hard and I deserve it), hello or maybe let's chat a bit, how does google translate or interpret “meow”?
Shibo enjoyed playing with balls made out of chocolate rappers. He was easy to please and yet demanding, but demanding for attention and affection. Sometimes I would hear him meowing as if crying, well that’s what it sounded like. And I’d look and see him with one of his toys in his mouth. I’d call him by name and he would come and drop the toy at my feet. He wants to play, but other times he acts like that, like babies do when they’re tired and sleepy.