A true story
Last week, the cat strolled into the bookshop via the back door. One of the bookshop people was taking a moment of fresh air. The cat neatly sidestepped and wandered in.
Clearly, he liked what he saw. The people who worked there were quite easy to find and supervise, the cat thought. He trained them within hours to install and fill a cat litter tray for him, and bring food.
They took him to the local vet: no collar, no microchip, no lead on where he might have come from, although he appeared to be possibly pedigree, Russian Blue.
The cat found the people in the shop to be good company. They didn't move around too much during the day, or leave, and so could be easily supervised by a cat climbing up a pile of boxes for a better view, or leaping onto a bench and getting a really gratifying reaction when a paw or two trod on a keyboard.
When he was sleepy, it offered (with its storage area out back) an ample number of locations in which to retire and sleep undisturbed. Books and boxes offered an agreeable variety of places to climb and explore, although he preferred to remain with the permanent people in the shop, at office or counter, rather than the customers.
Life as a bookshop cat seemed like an excellent choice. Even if that lovely lady who took him home for the weekend spent it sneezing, which didn't seem entirely polite, but could be overlooked since the rest of the weekend retreat was most pleasant.
On Monday, he was back in the shop. Today, he snoozed on the front counter, since one of the people was often to be found there, and he did like company. And supervising, when sleep wasn't a greater priority.
The shop people haven't given him a name. That can be dangerous... They did, however, ruefully agree with the axiom that while dogs have owners, cats have staff. As they absentmindedly scratched his head, before returning to their other work.
Later this week he'll be relocated to a new, permanent home, with a relative of one of the people he's trained. Is that his finest hour, finding himself a new home via the bookshop? (It's another of the things that makes this independent bookshop rather wonderful).