This morning I kept hearing the loud, persistent MEOWWWW- MEEEOWWWWWW of a cat outside. At first, I didn't pay any mind to it until it kept on and on. "What the heck's up with that cat" I muttered to myself and went outside to see what was going on.

I could hear it very clearly, but couldn't see it anywhere. I walked around the back of our apartment and called "Here kitty kitty." The meowing got louder as I went around to the south side of the building.

When I was able to find the cat, I also found why it was meowing.


It was perched way up in an electric power pole.


I suppose it had climbed up there after a bird, or maybe to run away from the big dog in the yard below, and then it was afraid to climb back down again.

What to do.

I tried calling it and gesturing it to come, and it made a couple of hesitant attempts to reach out toward me but wouldn't budge.


Just then, a squirrel, clearly also concerned about all the ruckus, scampered up the pole.


"What's the matter, Kitty?"   he asked.

"I am stuck up here on this pole, and I want to get down,"   Kitty replied.

"Oh. Is that all? I thought maybe you had food."


Disappointed, he scampered off back into the treetops.


"Oh dear,"   Poor Kitty thought to herself.   How am I ever going to get down from here?"


Well, I recalled stories from my youth about Fire Departments rescuing cats from trees, so I thought maybe they would rescue a cat from a utility pole too. So I called the L. A. City Fire Department. The tone in the dispatcher's voice when I explained the reason for my call made it abundantly clear that, no, they do not rescue cats. Yet another of many childhood innocences dashed against the rocks of modern progress.

Then I thought about calling the Department of Water and Power. It is, after all, their pole. However, their dispatcher wasn't much more interested than the Fire Department dispatcher was. She said that they are terribly backlogged due to the many power outages from the recent heat wave. She said she would put a request in for someone to come out but could not guarantee how soon it would be.

I thought about calling Animal Control, but if the cat is someone's pet they may lose it if it gets impounded and they don't think to call for it.

As I tried to sort this all out in my head and figure out what to do about it, I went to the back door and called the doggies out to go for a walk. We went around to the front yard. As I walked down the street I saw a "LOST CAT" notice posted on a light pole.


I walked over to the poster and sure enough, it was the cat that was stuck up on the pole. Or, at any rate, it was a cat identical to it.


I got on my cell phone and called the number on the poster. I told the man who answered, "Well, I know where your cat is, but I can't do anything about it."

"What do you mean?" he asked.

"It's stuck way up in the top of an electric pole in our neighbor's back yard."

"OH MY GOD! Where do you live?"

I gave him the address (turned out he lives just up the street) and he said he would be right over. And there he was in just a few minutes. I heard him back there calling the kitty and she was responding very enthusiastically! It was clear that Daddy and Kitty had indeed been reunited.

He was quite dismayed when I told him about the responses from the Fire Department and the Electric Company. He said, "Well, I'll just have to get up there and get her myself."

I said, "Well, you're braver than I am. Not only am I afraid of heights, I'm also afraid of getting electrocuted!"

He seemed to know something about power lines and said that the wires on the lower tier where his cat was perched were low-voltage and not dangerous.

I told him, "This is a pretty amazing story. I want to get my camera and take some pictures." (I had taken some earlier when I first saw the poor cat up there.) So I ran inside to get my camera.


The man borrowed a ladder from the neighbor and climbed up to the roof of the garage below the power pole.

(It's clearly obvious from this photo that the kitty recognized "Daddy"!!)


He called up to the kitty, "You've been verrrry naughty!"


Then up he went ...

Higher ...

... And higher ...


When he got to the top of the pole, he gave Kitty an affectionate pat on the head to reassure her.


He opened the kitty carrier he had taken up there with her. It took some coaxing to get her to hop in but she finally did, and then he cautiously climbed back down the pole.


When he got back to the garage roof, he called down to us, "Anyone want Kitty Stew?!" Of course, he was play-pretending mad, and we all realized he was very happy to have his kitty back.


Then down the ladder he came, rather winded and rather nervous at having to have climbed up that pole!


I snapped a photo of the very happy reunion and VERY happy ending to the story!

He thanked the neighbor for the use of his ladder and then thanked me, shaking my hand very firmly. Then, reaching for his wallet, he said, "And clearly you are entitled to the reward money."

"Oh that's okay," I said. "I wasn't looking for any reward. I was just concerned about the kitty."

He said, "Oh no, please, I am so glad to get her back..."

"Really, it's okay. That she's been rescued and is safe and sound is the best reward of all."

"Well ... are you sure?" he asked.

"Yes, of course," I said.

"Well, thanks very much. And to tell you the truth, that's a relief. I've been out of work for over a year......."

It's really amazing how good it feels to do the right thing.

Charles Richard Lester
Your Roving Reporter



My Web Site Portal Page


Please note that this entire Website (, and all text and some images* therein, are copyright © 1995-2007 by Charles Richard Lester. You are welcome to disseminate information or graphics from this site for non-commercial use only but only after requesting — and receiving — permission by its author (me). Please apply to Charles Richard Lester: (change “at“ to the “@“ symbol). Thank you for appreciating the value of creativity.

(*If you’re not sure whether or not a given image is in public domain — just ask.)

THIS APPLIES WITH SPECIFICITY AND, IN PARTICULAR, TO EBAY AUCTIONS. Under no circumstances is anyone ever permitted to use text, photos or images from my web site — or to put links to my site — on their ebay listings, or on any other similar auction web sites. ESPECIALLY my photos.