Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Just A Cat

After Felix appeared to be recovering from his stroke I watched for signs of his normal behavior. When he tried eating food out of his paw I was elated. It was another sign he was returning to his old self.

I was anxious for him to be able to jump up on things again. Like the desk in the kitchen, where the cats are fed out of reach of the dog. Or to jump on the dryer -- whenever a load of clothes were thrown in the dryer, Felix would jump up on the towel I kept there for him. Sometimes he would be so full of joy rolling around that he would fall off.

Felix would get so ecstatic when he was petted. But it wasn't enough to pet him -- he wanted to be in our faces. He would drape himself across our shoulders and rub his face against ours. There were times I thought he'd crawl down my throat if he could.

With Crab

With Me

I wanted to see the behavior that annoyed me, too. Like when the waterer was empty and Felix would jump on the toilet seat and bang, bang, bang the lid until I got up and gave him water. Or how he'd get excited when the birds were feeding and he would jump on my printer, run across the kitchen counter and stand by the sink looking out the kitchen window at the bird feeder, flip, flip, flipping his tail.

Sometimes I would look at my printer and see several copies that Felix had printed out of whatever happened to be in the scanner. Or I'd try to print something to discover that Felix had turned the printer off. He was also good at making flying jumps to look out the living room window sending my paperwork and books flying.

Crab was missing the Felix that slept with him. He tried to take Felix to bed one night but the bed was so high. Felix had been sleeping on a heating pad on the floor since his stroke. He was confused and not happy so Crab put him back in his safe spot.

But Felix was getting better! He started to come into the bathroom every time I went in there, hoping for some good petting while I was occupied on the throne. That went on for several days, then stopped.

He started sleeping more and eating less. Then he needed to be spoon fed again. I worked at getting enough food in him at each feeding.

Then we reached the end. No miracle stroke recovery stories. The end.

There is this perspective -- he was just a cat. One of many billions in the world. He was a cat I didn't want and a cat I was angry at much of the time. I will be finding his snot surprises for months to come, I'm sure. When I dug that hole weeks ago, I didn't dig under the cedar trees for fear of digging up the grave of one of many his predecessors. He was just a cat.

But I miss him.


Wednesday, December 10, 2008


When H was little, she would freak at bugs. Once when I was photographing her as a diminutive beauty queen on her tricycle on the front stoop she started screaming. For no reason, it seemed to me. But OMG! A ladybug had landed on her handlebars!

Before the ladybug landed

"Ladybugs are our friends," I told her. "They eat aphids which destroy good plants."

She was not convinced.

At that time one of the older buildings on the farm was still standing. Inside the walls was a beehive. I used to hold my hand on the side of the building and feel the activity inside. I loved my bees.

The bees traveled around the farm looking for food and H freaked whenever she encountered one.

"If you don't bother them, they won't bother you and they will fly away. Bees are our friends! They pollinate plants and make wonderful honey."

She was not convinced.

Fast forward to today. The building and that bee hive are long gone. H is a grown up big girl. Bees are disappearing from the planet at an alarming rate.

She sent me one of those email stories with photos about what happens when you don't clean your BBQ grill. The photo story started with the chemical bomb the dude used to kill bees when he saw some bees coming out from under the cover of his grill. The next photo showed dead bees piled up under the grill -- "a 20mm deep mass grave". (Must not be a US grill cleaner because he'd measure in inches)

So the bees are dead, the dude is happy and until --

He discovers all the honeycombs under the grill! What a mess to clean! Poor dude!

I think H sent this to me in the spirit of "That's Incredible!", but I am a humorless bitch.

Wednesday, December 03, 2008

Another Cat Update >^..^<

Today Felix moved around to avoid the vacuum cleaner instead of lying on the heating pad.

He is becoming more aware!