We have a female tabby cat named Gracie and a male black cat named Jesse. They're both around sixteen years old. They're both barn cats, but they're in the house a lot too.
Gracie isn't shy, but she doesn't usually like to be touched. Sometimes she does like to be touched, but there's no way to know which one it is this time unless you try. I don't usually try unless she's rubbing against my legs. I let her make contact first. Usually though, she just comes in and eats and leaves again. That's fine. That's how she is.
Jesse is very shy and very skittish. I lived here for months before he would even come near me. He's always out running around in the fields, but he's also skinny and he's always hungry. I used to leave kibble for him under the porch. When the weather got warmer, I started leaving the side door open to get some fresh air and he started coming inside the house to eat. He comes in and noisily chows down at least three times a day, and he's eating upstairs with my brother too. He's probably only thin because he runs constantly.
When Jesse finishes eating, he stands on the other side of the room from me and yowls at me to come pet him. If I'm busy, he will come closer, and I'll stick my hand out, but he won't come within reach, even if he's only an inch from the ends of my fingers. I don't know what that cat's deal is, but I always have to get up to pet him. And I usually do. My brother doesn't, but he says Jesse's been doing that forever and nobody knows why. He's unlikely to stop now.
My mom tells me not to let the cat train me, but I don't mind. Life is short and his life will be much shorter. He’s already sixteen. He won’t be around forever. I don’t mind getting up a few times a day to pet him and make him happy.
He's extremely affectionate and can't get enough attention, now that he trusts me. During the day, he will sit on the couch for a while, drooling and kneading and purring like an outboard motor while I pet him, and then go back out again for a while. He comes back in in the early evening and spends all evening and night sleeping on the couch beside me, snoring softly. I stay up all night while the whole house is asleep, so it's nice to have company, even if he's asleep too.