Shelly Kitty, photo by Romy Ashby

No. 27: Goody Cable (2005)

Shelly Kitty, Photo by Romy Ashby

In the coastal town of Newport, Oregon, there hangs on a cliff over the ocean an old hotel. It’s run by a charming and eccentric lady named Goody Cable, who rescued the place from ruin and turned it into a hideout for book lovers called The Sylvia Beach Hotel. Every room is dedicated to a particular writer, the halls are roamed by cats at night and everyone eats together at  communal tables in the large dining room on the ground floor. Goody Cable sees the world through a very unusual glass,  and her particular gift is the way she enables everyone in her presence to see through that glass, too. She is mischief, curiosity, imagination and generosity. She loves stories and being in the throes of all-consuming obsession. She is infatuated with backhoes. She admires shy people and regards their shyness, something she does not possess, as a special achievement. This cat is Shelly, named for the poet, who for a long time kept the old hotel free of (visible) mice.

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Photo of Kitty in the Poe Room by Romy Ashby