A strange tale…
Me, I’m very pragmatic regarding cats. Other people’s cats as well as my own. Not so pragmatic about stray cats coming into my house and eating the food I’ve left for my own cats, but that’s another story altogether.
I’ve always liked cats. They’re independent, usually at home, a warm body at best, another breath of life in the house at worst. I’ve never seen them as particularly lovable or loving animals. They’re way too self sufficient for that.
That being said.
Since the loss of my old man, I’ve not really had an animal soul close to mine. Sure, my other dogs are there, but they don’t have, and likely never will have, the bond me and my old man shared. And really, the cats have never struck me as particularly soulful animals.
I have two of them. The black one, Chaplin, that only comes home to eat. He will lightly step into the house and flop down on the floor in front of my feet and start purring like the proverbial tractor. If there’s food, and he admonishes me, I know he wants milk. Once I poured the milk and he’s had his fill, he will go off on his saunters. A real tom. Huge cat, always a streak of blood somewhere, often ticks that I have to pull of. He’s at home maybe twice a day, and then he’s off again – quite like a few men I know!
Then we have the white one. Or rather, the whitish one because he’s not quite white, just not enough of any other colour :-). Anyhow. Data’s been fixed, so he’s usually in and around the house. Never strays far. He will sit with me when I bath, come running to the bathroom so I can open the tap for him to drink water from, sit on the piano when I’m in the dining room – in short, he’s usually where I am. Even so. He does not really cuddle, or even let me hold, him. Unlike the other one. Data hardly ever purrs for that matter.
And here starts the strange tale.
Usually, when it’s bed time, and I have the hot water bottle under the covers, he’s on the bed. Data that is. I can hardly find my own spot because he insists on sleeping on top of me. So, I get in, and wrestle with him a bit and then we settle down. He usually parks off on my stomach or legs. And that’s where he spends the night.
On Sunday night though, I was feeling out of sorts. Worried about the job, worried about money – the usual. Some tears were shed because, truth be told, I was actually scared there for a moment.
I get in to bed as per usual, expecting Data to park off on his usual spot. Not so. He did something that he’s never done before, and has not done since. He almost did not wait for me to get settled before he started nesting. In the crook of my arm, just about on my chest. It was not particularly cold on Sunday, I did not rub catnip on me or the bedding.
The only conclusion I could come to was that he somehow realised that I need a little more than an aloof body on my legs, and proceeded to give me a little more than I expected. Sort of a “Don’t worry. It will all be OK eventually. Just hang in there, I’m with you”
Which I thought was very cool of him 😉
As a PS, and something completely different, my good friend Sam’s mom died yesterday. She was sick, in hospital, and she probably just gave up the constant struggle that she called life. I’m sorry you had to go through this alone Sam. My thoughts will be with you through this very tough time you’re facing. And beyond.
Ave Maria, gratia plena, Dominus tecum.
Benedicta tu in mulieribus,
et benedictus fructus ventris tui, Iesus.
Sancta Maria, Mater Dei,
ora pro nobis peccatoribus,
nunc et in hora mortis nostrae. Amen.
Hail Mary, full of grace, the Lord is with thee.
Blessed art thou among women,
and blessed is the fruit of thy womb, Jesus.
Holy Mary, Mother of God,
pray for us sinners,
now and in the hour of our death. Amen.