A phenomena that started in Taiwan has made it’s way to New York City – a cat café! I was curious so I ventured down to the Lower East Side on Hester St to a place called the Meow Parlour. I really didn’t know what a cat café was.

How many cats were there? Would they like me? Could I touch one?

I was a cat guy when I was 10. Now as a father of three living in New York, I’m yet to embrace the cat again. I wondered if this café would take me back to my youth.

Upon entry I took my shoes off, entered the door and met with the founder/owner, Christina Ha. A pleasant young lady who exuded only the calmness a woman who spends time with cats would.  This venue was channeling the vibe of the cat beautifully.

Quickly Christina stated the ground rules, “Don’t feed the cats; you can pet the sleeping cats but don’t wake them; no flash photography and if you want to pick up a cat just ask us.” Now I was ready.

As I grew more comfortable with the cats I wanted the full experience of what her shop offered. What did I have to do? Christina said simply, “Lay down, ignore them and they will come.”

Feeling relaxed and inspired I started to love the cat again after my Meow Parlour visit.

If you want to check this place out, head down to 46 Hester St., on New York City’s Lower East Side. While being a sanctuary for cats and humans, the Meow Parlour along with Kitty Kind also play a role in finding their cats permanent homes.

I think I’m going to be a cat man again.

–Brad Blanks/Shannon in the Morning


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