Elaine Martini
Elaine Martini 

Instant cat


I'm sorry It's my first time, I'm not sure how it works”. Said the old lady hesitantly as she approaches the counter.

Don't worry it's not complicated”. Replied the young lady whilst she carried on typing and looking at the computer screen. “Just give me a minute and I'll be with you. It would help if you decide exactly what you want before we start”

I know exactly what I want but I'm not sure you will be able to help. I haven't seen one of those for so many years. People nowadays only want cute grey or white fluffy ones. The ones that look like stuffed toys. I want one that will look like they used to. I want it to have some life, personality and uniqueness, like before. Cats used to be my favourite animals now they look and behave like pieces of furniture. I bet you have never seen one of those, you look very young” said the old lady with a nostalgic smile

Ok, breed?” the young lady started going through the questionnaire

Crossbreed please”

Crossbreed? What breeds? Said the young lady frowning.

Anything really. I'm not too bothered about breeds. I never knew what breeds my cats were when I was growing up” said the old lady wiping her upper lip with her handkerchief.

Ok then, I'll tick the first two in the list. Colour?”

Black please if you have that in the list." The old lady asked hesitantly

I have never seen a black cat. They are not on the list, what other colours?” The young lady said looking at the old lady for the first time

I was afraid black wouldn't be on the list. People had this silly thing of thinking they were unlucky, it was always the opposite to me. Could you please ask someone if it would be possible to have a black cat as a special request? I'll pay extra.” she said with a more assertive tone of voice

We can't add things to the list, I'm sorry” she replied impatiently

Please could you check with your manager, it's important,” the old lady said moving closer to the counter.

The young lady knocked on the door behind the counter. A young gentleman came out, as young as the lady serving.

How can I help?” he said

Is there any way I could have a cat made in black? Any breed but the colour is important” the old lady said gently.

We never printed one of those, I'm afraid we don't have materials or settings in the 3d printer for that” he replied looking at his wrist to check his phone.

I'm sorry, I know you are very busy and attending to a request of an old lady might seem like a waste of time but please could you check? It's important”

He picked up the phone and dialled a number. He asked the question and waited for a few minutes. He nodded a couple of times before putting the phone down. He wrote something down and looked up at the old lady again.

They said the only way for them to print it would be to buy the settings and materials from a library that keeps records of the vintage breeds. We could do it but it will take longer and will cost a lot more” He said impatiently looking at his wrist again

That's ok, I was expecting it. Please go ahead. I knew the type of cat I wanted wouldn't be your standard instant cat service.” 


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© Elaine Martini