Asheville North Carolina's historic Riverside Cemetery, just a few blocks from The Lion & the Rose Bed and Breakfast, is the final resting place for many famous citizens: Civil War Governor Zebulon Vance, writers Thomas Wolfe and O. Henry, and architect Richard Sharp Smith - to name a few.
However, our favorite resident, Leo the Cat, is still among the living. Leo's history is just as interesting as that of the permanent cemetery residents - maybe even more so. You see, he has a home within a block of the cemetery. But, he rarely goes there because he doesn't get along with the other cats who live there. His owner keeps an eye on him and brings food to him when she's able, but she is getting on in years so she can't visit him as often as she'd like.
The park warden and his staff make sure that Leo always has fresh water and food. They've placed two bowls for him just outside the warden's office building on the cemetery grounds. Plus, other regular visitors bring food to Leo. We are among them. Sometimes Leo finds us before we get to his bowls, so we feed him on the closest flat surface away from the road.
Our friend, Carolyn, sometimes gives Leo extra attention, and she comes up with good omelet recipes too.
Leo is a handsome and friendly cat, but this has caused him some problems. People fall in love with him, think he is a stray, and take him away to their homes. This has happened so many times that the warden has posted a sign in his office window with Leo's photo on it.
The sign reads: My name is Leo. I like to hang around the cemetery. I have a home, so please don't take me to yours.
As a matter of fact, Leo's sign is close to the photos of some of the other famous Riverside residents...
an interesting comment on lives great and small.