When our first furry pal Brio died in 1999, it was only three days later we were back on the cat owner’s bike with Sammy. Ready to go for another 16 memorable years.
Will it happen again? Nobody knows for sure, but I’d say it’s unlikely we’ll move this quickly next time. It was only a serendipitous set of circumstances that caused Sammy to be with us so soon after we said good-bye to Brio.
- I should never have been in the Vet’s office that Friday to begin with. It’s just that we were so upset after Brio passed away that the compassionate vet told me to come back later to pay the final bill. I was doing that when I spotted Sam in a cage in the vet’s reception room.
- Sammy was a particularly handsome and friendly 6 month old kitten who had obviously been someone’s pet, run away and got lost. A kind homeowner saw him begging outside her door and brought him in to the vet for adoption. (His photo above was taken shortly after we brought him home.)
- I was hurting bad just then, and Sammy seemed to sense this. He snuggled up and he had the greatest purr I had ever heard in my life.
- Sammy’s other option was to go to a farm and be a barn cat, whereas we could and did give him a lifetime of love and domestic warmth.
So I convinced Maria (somewhat against her will) that we needed to give Sammy a lifetime home. I shall always be grateful that she humored me that day. Sammy did his part by being “her” kitty all his life.
It wasn’t always easy with him. He was a rugged individualist used to being outdoors, and it took us months to calm him down and accept being an indoor cat. He remained like Harry Houdini all his life and you had to watch always that he didn’t get through the tiniest crack in the door to the outside world. He was smart, silent, and sneaky forever.
Late in life he developed the thyroid issue and I spent two years giving him medication twice a day. We were fortunate to have an experienced former kennel owner as a friend. She took charge of Sam’s care when we had to be away.
So am I ready to get back on the bike again? Never say never, and I am hurting – bigtime. But this time I do have lots of cats nearby. My daughter has two, and our friend who looked after Sam is going away next week and we’ll host her little black pal at our place. So I hope to get my cat “fix” that way for a while.
I’m thinking I need a little time after 33 years to sort this cat owner thing out – and I believe that the set of circumstances that brought Sammy into our lives is a once in a lifetime happening.