Friday, November 23, 2007

Fluffcat

Snow has gone to heaven. What started with a delicate sneeze ended two weeks later, despite all the best vet in the world could do, with putting her to sleep.

She came to me 10+ years ago, already grown and named, and already a royal pain in the ass, as the best cats are. Dogs have owners; cats have staff.

As self-absorbed as Garfield, she demanded food, attention and luxurious surroundings in equal measure, and was a past master at getting them. My Beloved and I liked to say that she had two college-educated people working full time to keep her in comfort.

She was the blonde joke of the cat world, too, not the sharpest knife in the drawer. One evening, as MB and I were enjoying a romantic dinner with votive candles lighted on the table in the deepening twilight, she jumped up on the far side of the table and proceeded to walk straight across the candles, lighting her luxuriant ruff on fire. As I sat in frozen horror in my chair, MB had the presence of mind quickly to pat out the flames, whereupon she jumped down with a disgusted look at being so manhandled, leaving behind two flabbergasted staff members and the rank smell of singed fur.

This was a cat with rights. If you happened to nudge her as she lay unseen under the dining room table, she calmly nipped your ankle to remind you of your place in the universe, that of the cat food delivery person who is not entitled to move the cat.

She had a delicate stomach and frequent hairballs. She woke me
with insistent pats to my head in the predawn dark when she wanted breakfast. She was pushy and obnoxious and dumb as a box of rocks.

So, how did she worm her way into my heart and, now that she's gone, leave this big empty space?

I have indelible memories of her chin lifted in pleasure to my rubbing fingers, of her tail straight up in the air as she runs out to welcome the neighbor's dog who has been her friend since the puppy arrived 10 years ago, of her strolling nonchalantly 40 feet above the ground
along the joists when our deck was being rebuilt, of her elongated shape stretched out in a sunbeam watching me for any kitchenward movement through slitted yellow eyes.

I will always define blissful contentment with this image: The bedroom is chilly because we have all the windows open to the fresh night air and the sound of bay waves lapping gently on the shore. I am under the covers snugly sandwiched between MB's big, warm, gently snoring body on one side and Snow's loudly purring warmth on the other. When I go to heaven, I hope it's just like that.

Goodbye, Fluffcat. You'll be missed.

10 Comments:

Blogger Jennywenny said...

Oh dear, how sad. They do get under our skin dont they. I remember us saying goodbye to our miss moppet when I was about 8, my mum, me and my brother were in buckets of tears, despite the fact she pissed on the carpet and swiped at our legs every time we walked past her, and was most definitely not a lap cat.

Wednesday, November 21, 2007  
Blogger Dagny said...

So sorry to hear that she has passed.

Friday, November 23, 2007  
Blogger cookiecrumb said...

Very, very sorry. You gave her a great life, and I know you gave her a great death (there is such a thing, especially with pets whom we can remove from their agony).

Friday, November 23, 2007  
Blogger dancingmorganmouse said...

I'm so sorry to hear the very spoiled cat has gone - it fair breaks the heart when this happens. They leave an empty purr-free spot that aches. It does sound like her life was one of the good ones though, I'm sure if she could have thanked her staff, she would have.

Friday, November 23, 2007  
Blogger Marsha Vdovin said...

I'm so sorry. Cats mean so much to us and add so much to our lives and it's so traumatic when they pass.

I bet you gave her a great life.

Sunday, November 25, 2007  
Blogger Mouse said...

It is so sad when they have to leave us but lovely that such memories remain to make you smile

Monday, November 26, 2007  
Blogger Zoomie said...

Jennywenny, thank you for the kind words.

Dagny, you're sweet. I'll miss her.

Cookiecrumb, thanks for that consolation. She went quietly - I think she was ready.

DMM, we have that satisfaction of knowing no one could have loved her more or cared for her better.

Marsha, I like to think so. Thanks for the caring thoughts.

Mouse, it's true - I keep recalling funny memories and smiling.

Monday, November 26, 2007  
Anonymous Mrs. L said...

So sorry to hear about your cat. Hugs.

Tuesday, November 27, 2007  
Blogger namastenancy said...

What a charming tribute to a beloved (if slightly dumb) pet. I've shared it with another friend who is a cat lover. I do love the saying "Dogs have owners. Cats have staff." So very true.

Thursday, November 29, 2007  
Blogger Zoomie said...

Mrs. I, thanks for the kind thoughts.

NamasteNancy,yes, she was a few bricks short of a full load but lovable, anyway.

Thursday, November 29, 2007  

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