Saturday, May 21, 2005


The other day in class the students were concentrating on something when the silence was broken by the sound of a kitten crying. It was a small, sad sound, like the kitten was stuck in a ventilation shaft or in the ceiling. We all looked around, but we couldn't see any kitten. It mewed weakly a couple more times and then stopped.

We sat there staring at each other for a minute, waiting for the kitten to start again so we could locate it. There were not many places in the classroom where a kitten could hide, or be stuck. I checked outside the door and windows.

"Does somebody have a kitten in their bag?" I asked, and the students smiled but looked anxious. It did not sound like a happy kitten.

"Perhaps we are being haunted by a lost kitten?" I suggested, and then had to teach them what haunt meant. It was a hard one to explain, but once they got it a couple of students shivered and told me they had chicken skin.

"Goosebumps," I corrected them. I should have remembered they tend to be superstitious.

A very shy student came back from the toilets just as the mewing started again. She heard it, dived for her bag, and switched off her mobile phone. The mewing stopped. Everybody started laughing, and she looked up, blushing.

"Sorry," she said.

"Please tell your kitten not to call you again during class," I told her.

I noticed after class the she had suddenly become very popular. I predict a chorus of kittens next week, but at least next time I'll know where they're coming from.


Faerunner said...

I have never heard a ringtone sound like a real cat before. The closest we get around here are catbirds, which will mew from the bushes and sound so real that I've gone looking for my cats thinking that they were in the brush, and scared the bird instead.

Hope your other students don't find other creature ringtones... the classroom could become a zoo!

Frally said...

Ha! That's hilarious! (I came to say thanks for the kind words on my blog too. I'm finding everyone's support incredibly inspirational :))