For those who enjoy people-watching, visiting a shopping mall can be quite an entertaining experience. With thousands of visitors each day, these massive concrete structures are bustling with individuals going about their busy lives. While some shoppers have a specific purpose in mind, others, like myself, use the chaos to escape and take a quick breath amidst the commotion. Amidst the hustle and bustle, it’s easy to become a wallflower and observe the little moments of life. Recently, however, something unexpected and quite literal occurred at the Westfield Citrus Park mall in Tampa, Florida, giving patrons a memorable experience to witness.
To be truthful, it all started at the parking lot of the mall. Our family, Cole and Marmalade, has had a great working relationship with the mall management in the past. We’ve collaborated on several projects like hosting adoption events at the Big Cat Rescue Virtual Reality Zoo that’s located within the mall. It’s been a delightful experience meeting plenty of animal enthusiasts along the way.
Andrea and the mall staff were determined not to lose hope in finding the missing kitten. They went as far as creating posters and hanging them around the mall, hoping that someone had spotted the little feline. Despite the fact that many people were keeping an eye out for the kitten, it seemed to have vanished without a trace.
Upon spotting the kitten, Andrea wasted no time in informing Chris who hurried to the mall. Together they strategized on how to safely rescue the scared feline from the ride. The ride was immediately shut down to avoid the kitten getting hurt while attempting to escape into its dark depths. Despite Chris’ attempts to lure the kitten out with fish, it stubbornly climbed further into the ride’s base, making it impossible to rescue. The duo combed every inch of the ride before concluding that their efforts were futile. However, they ensured that the kitten was nowhere near any moving parts before restarting the ride. One can only imagine what the bystanders thought of the commotion surrounding the ride that day!
Chris and his companions devised a strategy for rescuing the kitten without any obstacles from the masses at the mall. However, an extraordinary event happened. It was akin to a Black Friday miracle of acquiring a large-screen television. A fresh employee spotted the kitten during their shift change in the evening and was able to capture it.
Fortunately, a rescuer who was on her way to the BCR AR Zoo in the mall took the initiative to foster the kitten herself, eliminating the need for Chris to act as a mediator. This minimized the number of times the frightened kitten had to be transferred, which is always a relief in such a stressful situation. Upon examination, it was discovered that the kitten was a female and approximately three months old, which is quite uncommon. However, given that the kitten had run into the mall, it was already highly unlikely that it would be a male…just kidding!
According to Crystal Grimes, the foster parent who opened her home to the kitten, there were no health problems with the feline. This is an uncommon occurrence for stray cats, particularly in Florida where they are exposed to various insects, extreme temperatures, and many other feral cats that can spread viruses.
They decided to name the kitten “Merry” as a tribute to its short stint under the Merry-Go-Round.
In just under two months, Merry embarked on another journey – but this time, it was a long-term one! It all began at a Petco adoption event, where Merry caught the eye of a couple who fell in love with her immediately.
They were immediately smitten with the courageous and affectionate ginger girl they had just met. However, they needed to carefully consider whether she would fit in with the rest of their feline family. They took a few days to weigh their options before deciding that she was the perfect addition to their personal circus – consisting of six cats already!
After losing their beloved ginger cat, they had been contemplating the idea of paying homage to their peach-colored furry friend by welcoming another into their home. Despite some back and forth, they ultimately agreed that the new ginger girl was the ideal match for their family.
We are thrilled to announce that Merry became a part of their family on September 17th, 2019. From the very first day, she has been showing her affection by purring and kneading her paws. Currently, she loves being with her humans and follows them wherever they go in the house.