The cat clung to the branch, praying that it didn't start to rain. Again.
That had been the worst, really. The cold, wet rain that fell without notice and without mercy. Being up in the top of the tree, sitting on a branch that could barely hold the weight was punishment enough. And now it had to rain, too?
"Dang," thought the cat. "I didn't ask for this. I didn't ask for the rain, I didn't ask for the fear of falling. And I sure didn't ask for an empty stomach."
The lady from the nearby house had left a can of tuna below the tree, hoping that the smell would lure the cat down from the high perch.
"That's just mean," the cat meowed to himself. "She's forcing me to look at this food when she knows full well I can't reach it."
As the day wore on, and word of the cat's predicament spread through the neighborhood, all sorts of humans came to gawk at the cat and ask questions.
"What got him up there?"
"Is the branch strong enough to hold him?"
And the most important, "How is he going to get down?"
The cat rolled his eyes, "Of course I know how I got up here. It was innocent, really. That trunk just looked so enticing. So interesting. So I explored it, of course. After all, I am a cat. But then I saw the first branch. I knew that had to be better than the lowly trunk, so I jumped. Just like any cat would. Each branch had a better looking branch above it, so I kept jumping and climbing."
"There is no problem with jumping and climbing. I've heard that's normal for a cat."
"And I know that I can get down. I know that I can go back. But it scares me. Even though I see the tuna waiting for me, I can't bring myself to do it. Besides, there is no reason to get down. I'm up here in this tree, and I am comfortable. Really. No really, I am."
"I wouldn't call this being stuck, I'd call it . . . a life choice."
Bit by bit, his stomach slowly began to growl louder. Drop by drop, the rain slowly began to fall. Little by little, the branch slowly started to crack.
He would have to get down. The whole time wishing he had never gone up.
Today the cat spends its time sponsoring other cats and teaching about the dangers of trees.