At this point, I think it's pretty safe to say that one of my passions in life is food; but did you know that I'm also a huge animal lover? When I was growing up, I had a miniature poodle who was basically my best friend - but she ran away a couple of years ago, and that's pretty much been one of the top five biggest heartbreaks of my whole life. For the longest time, I didn't want to get another pet. I wasn't ready to love again, TBH. And then I decided to take positive steps towards getting over this phobia, and bought myself a Betta fish.
I took really good care of him, but he still promptly died a week after purchase. I gave him a nice, big tank, full of Betta-friendly accoutrements; I fed him the appropriate amount every day, and followed a strict Betta regiment to make sure he was going to have a long, happy life. And he still bit the big one. It was a depressing week, my friends. A very depressing week. #RIPPastel.
But then I remembered the cat cafe, and things looked a little brighter. I mean, I love cats (not as much as dogs, I won't lie to you guys) - and a whole cafe full of adorable kitties seemed like exactly what I needed to get over the fresh wounds left by the untimely death of my Betta. Armed with that hope, I decided to make the trek out to the Plateau and spend some time at Café Chat L'Heureux (172 Avenue Duluth E).
Now, going to the cat cafe was something I'd wanted to do since I first found out about it - but it was just one of those things I never actually got around to doing. It seemed like more of a novelty than anything else. But honestly, what's life without a little novelty, right? And with that mantra, I made my way to Chat L'Heureux.
First of all, yes, there are literal cats roaming around everywhere. Not only that, but there is cat artwork on the walls; there are cat accessories you can buy; little cards that describe each cat in detail; and, of course, rules you have to follow. You also have to take off your shoes when you go in, which makes sense because nobody wants to be the person who accidentally steps on a cat's tail with their heavy winter boots (sidenote: that person would be me, hands down. The struggle is real when you have 0 coordination). There are also spots for the cats to chill, literally everywhere.
Which I thought was super cool. The cats have little holes in the walls so they can roam around freely, pretty much everywhere. They've got beds and scratching posts, and you can ask for cat toys at the counter. I didn't, because I wanted to see if I could attract a cuddly kitten just by being my usual, non-aggressive self. Hint: I couldn't.
The cats are super social, though, and pretty much the cutest things I've ever seen in my life. You're not supposed to grab them, so I resisted the urge to actually snuggle with one in the middle of the cafe (plus, I'm an adult and have to hold it together sometimes); but I did pet a bunch of them, and they interacted with pretty much everyone in the cafe. I had one actually chill by my feet for a bit while I ate, which I thought was the cutest thing. Not saying that in that moment I was some kind of cat Khaleesi... but, you know, if the shoe fits.
Other than the fact that this place is an actual haven for cat lovers, it's also a really great place to study. I got some readings done without interruption. Plus, they say that being surrounded by cats is a huge stress reliever, which I guess is true, because normally when I'm doing readings I feel like actual death, but this time I felt fine.
At the end of the day, I got to pet some adorable kitties and get some readings done in a super stress-free environment. Win-win? Win-win.