Sorry, it's a long one, but a great story, I still can't believe it happened.
When I was younger, (around 16 or 17) I wasn't that great of a kid. Luckily I had my life together. I had my own apartment and a couple of decent paying jobs. I'd caught a ride to visit a friend out of town (I had no licence or car at the time). After the 2 hour car ride I was dropped off to visit with my friend for the day. Her and I bustled around the city and ended up at a "friend of a friend's" home. The house was a complete disaster and there was a mother cat and her two kittens living in the litter box in the corner of the disgusting kitchen. I don't need to go into detail about the house, but I can tell you it wasn't fit for the cats, never mind for humans. I was told that the kittens and the mother were going to be shipped out to the back yard that day because they had no food left to feed them. At the time it was warm enough for them, but September was coming to an end and it was the middle of a city in Maine, not a fit time or place for animals to be homeless.
I felt so bad for these babies... never mind the mother cat (I was at an age where I got very emotional over these kind of things). I spent the better part of an hour trying to talk the owners out of their decision to throw these cats to the street. After a lot of examination I discovered that the cat family was not only in desperate need of baths, but they were so infested with fleas that the smallest kitten couldn't even open his eyes. These animals were in need of care or they weren't going to make it. After talking with the girl who'd brought me here, we decide to take the animals back to her house. She had a cat of her own, but was willing to invest the money and time into bringing these animals back to health.
During the evening we washed them all and flea treated them. Her other cat seemed to get along with them well enough, but the smallest kitten he just didn't like. He was always hissing at the baby and swiping at him. I concluded it just wasn't a safe place for this baby and he would come home with me.
The next day, my friend who had brought me into the city never showed up to retrieve me, no word, nothing. I had to get home because I was due for work that evening and if I didn't get there I'd lose my job. I may not have been a great kid, but I had enough sense to take employment seriously, it meant more than just a paycheck to me.
So, I made one of those decisions that only a teen can be ignorant enough to make. I stuffed this baby kitten into my backpack (we cut holes so he'd have plenty have fresh air, and my backpack was practically empty anyhow) and walked to the nearest highway to hitch hike home.
This is where my angel comes in.
The first car to stop was a woman I'm guessing was in her mid-40's. She was shocked to see someone my age hitch hiking alone, never mind the 80 mile distance I was trying to make. She was also heart broken after hearing my kittens story. She decided that instead of driving me all the way home, she wanted to pay a bus fare to send me home. She took me to the bus station and insisted on paying my ticket. The bus wouldn't take the kitten.. not even in a carrier. I was distraught, I didn't want this kitten going to a shelter, at the time there were no "no-kill" shelters in the area and I feared what would happen to the little guy after what he'd been through already. This woman offered to take him home, but she couldn't keep him. So we agreed to meet in my hometown in 2 days and she would bring me the baby. She was driving through anyway to go visit friends and it wouldn't be out of her way.
Two days later, she calls and meets me at a local coffee shop. I was honestly surprised that she called, I hadn't expected so much from a stranger. Not only did she bring me my kitten, but he was flea free and she'd taken him to a vet and had all his shots and initial examination, he was given de-worm medicine and she gave that to me along with the carrier she'd purchased. I was completely in awe at this woman. She insisted it was her pleasure, she was glad she could help. She wouldn't even give me her name and address so we could keep in touch... she just wanted to help, nothing more.
Joe-Joe (as he was named) didn't live a long life (about 6 years), but he did live a happy, healthy one. To this day I have never seen his angel again, but I remember her all the time and I believe it's made me a better person, if it wasn't for her, I don't even know that Joe-Joe would have made it as long as he did.
Glad there is a place where I can share this story
... I haven't thought about her in a few years and all the stories on here made me think of it.