“Do you know," Peter asked, "why swallows build in the eaves of houses? It is to listen to the stories.” ~ J.M. Barrie, Peter Pan

4.20.2008

The Story of Bob



Where Bob came from I can't be certain. He was just there one very dark night, waiting for me on my front porch. I was living in the country then. I pulled through the gate onto my property & my headlights swept across this white & cream cat sitting there as if he were home. For a split second I, too, thought, good, he's home & then remembered he wasn't mine. It was cold, he was hungry & injured, and against all good sense I fed him. And that was that. He was there every evening & soon every day. His leg had been hurt, apparently in a fight, and I had no extra money to pay for my vet to see him. But I called Dr. Alexander anyway (best vet EVER) & he recommended some home remedies & Bob got well. My cat Maggie was not at all happy about that turn of events - she is a one-woman cat & sees no reason why I shouldn't be a one-cat woman. But Bob was there - for months he would sleep under the house next to the heater. Eventually he & Maggie reached a truce, and when the time came for me to move back into town, there was no way I could leave him. So off to the vet he went, to be neutered & vaccinated, and we came to town.

I don't remember how many years it took until Bob left me for Mary - y'all remember, my across-the-street-neighbor. He checked out other houses first, kind of like Goldilocks looking for the bed that was just right. One of our ex-neighbors came home to find him asleep on one of her son's beds - we never knew how he got into the house. But eventually it was Mary - Mary & her House of Many Colors & many comfortable chairs & a just right ginkgo tree to leap into. And so he moved in. How could I stop him?

Bob made his own destiny in this world. He knew what he wanted & he made sure he took the right steps to achieve his desires. Mary always told people he had 2 moms, but really he had none. He was his own man. He took care of himself.

We lost Bob today. He was about 14 years old, maybe a little older, but it was too soon. He'd been struggling with a kidney problem for several months, and was under the weekly care of Dr. Alexander, about whom I cannot say enough good things. But last night, his kidneys began to fail, and by this morning it was obvious we had to take him to the Emergency Clinic. So Mary, Lyndi-Linda (Mary's caretaker) & I drove him in, and all 3 of us held him till the end. Katie was there to hold Bob in the sunshine before we left Mary's house & he seemed pleased to feel the breeze & hear the birds & smell the flowers. Robert returned home from his week-long photo shoot to bury him, and found a 1917 Mercury Dime deep in the ground while digging. 2 nickels from Lyndi-Linda's pocket were buried with Bob, to pay the ferryman. I found an azalea bloom, some blue flowers & pink & purple & tied the bouquet with grass to lay on his grave.

Bob, you were so loved. Take care, sweetie.


3 comments:

  1. I'm so sorry sweetie. I know what it's like to lose a pet. Just know that you (and Mary) gave him a great home, love and companionship which he wouldn't have otherwise had. Tell Mary that I am sorry for her loss. Just a few more days and I can give you a real hug.

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  2. Christy - Thanks so much. This morning Mary's other cat (he showed up about 4 years go & his name is Charlie) was sitting on Bob's grave, smelling the bouquet that was still laying there. It was heartbreaking.

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  3. I'm so sorry about Bob, but you all gave him a very good life.
    Margo

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