I live in a two-floor apartment. The bottom-most one is on the second floor of the building (and the other one on the third floor, of course).
Leading to the backyard is what is called an “emergency staircase”: a very tiny metal, sweeping staircase which is guaranteed to kill you if you run down it while there is fire. This staircase allows us to reach a long but not large gallery which a glassed door* separates from our apartment. The stairs, however, also continue up to a small balcony upstairs. From the upstairs bathroom of my apartment, I can theoretically take the exit on this balcony and walk down the stairs in case of an emergency. Of course, this means passing through an extremely small window, which is located rather high up the wall.
I have a very cute kitten (with thumbs!) who will be 1 year old in August, around the same time as my 19th birthday. She’s very easily scared and will let pretty much nobody but myself approach her. However, of course, she’s also a kitten, so she’s curious and likes to explore.
I somehow had the idea of letting her go outside. At first, I watched her closely. I didn’t want her to wander too far off and I know she could get scared if someone came or something like that. So I sat there with her. However, it was pretty hot outside, so I came back inside and let her alone, leaving the door open so she could come back in if she felt like it. That was really stupid of me.
She’s thin enough to pass through the bars of the gallery. From there, she could jump on the roof of a shed just below, and access the neighbor’s gallery (in the same block as I live). I went to get her there (lots of pretty plants to take a shit in), but I decided to let her climb up the stairs on her own.
I thought that, well, if wandering around and smelling things is all that interests her, I could as well return inside and watch her climb the second part of the stairs. I thought ‘Hey, it would be cool if I waited for her in the bathroom upstairs and let her in through the window. She’d think it’s so cool to climb up from outdoors like that.’
So, because I lack stupid acts in my life, I went indoors and watched her climb up. She reached some of the top steps…and then she was the one to do something stupid. Instead of climbing up the rest of the stairs and coming to me, she jumped onto the gallery’s roof. It’s inclined, so she had a hard time holding on to it and meowed her throat out. I was glad I hadn’t cut off her claws, as she could cling to the roof. Of course, she was in a rather panicking state. She would see me through the window and couldn’t quite figure out how to make it to the other side.
She was under the balcony, so she couldn’t just dissolve to pass through the bars (she could pass through the handrail bars, but not through the tiny bars that form the floor). I thought up of two ways she could have been safe. First, she could have kept moving to the left and climbed up onto the balcony, but that was dangerous, scary and hard to explain to a kitty. So I went with trying the second option. I went into the stairs and started calling her out. I was a bit panicking, but I know she was hearing me, and I’m quite sure she was only longing to get off of there. But she was also scared and couldn’t control her movements quite well. She would sometimes slip off a little, and always return as high as possible. She never really seemed to be moving towards me.
I didn’t really know what else to do, so I just kept calling her, in the hope that she would understand. She could easily have jumped onto me. She would have clung her claws into my skin, but it would have been much more relaxing than what happened next.
She fell off the roof. She made a two-floor fall onto cement.
I cried out as she fell. I never cried out but I was so scared for her!
I ran to get her, she was so scared. She ran and jumped onto the nearest window she found. I brought her back in and checked whether she was hurt. Her legs seem okay, but a few minutes ago I noticed she got blood under her nose. Even if she had had nothing, I would have taken her to the vet tomorrow, but now I feel even more as it is my duty.
I feel so stupid for letting her out there without watching her…
*a “patio door” in Quebec, I am not sure of the English name. They are large doors made only of glass (and plastic to hold the glass…).
Edit. I’m placing “Heather Locklear” on my list of spam words for the moment because I keep getting spam referring to her. So if for some reason you think that Heather Lockler has anything to do with my blog and want to tell me about her, find some way to get around the spam blocker (by spacing out her name, for example).