This photo was taken at around 5:00 in the morning in the summer of 2009. We (Mom and Dad who are sound asleep in the v-birth up forward) and I are on the boat in New Harbor, Block Island. Trey has decided that every morning he is going to wake up (around 4 and jump on my bunk because he wants to go outside to circumnavigate and perform a full inspection of the boat before anyone else wakes up).
The glitch here (and every morning that he does this) is that it’s very hard to open the sliders on the back of the boat without waking anyone else up. You sort of have to lift them – and then slide quietly to give Trey the space he needs – and then keep an eye on him because he’s walking around the boat without his little kitty life jacket on.
If all goes according to plan – Mom and Dad will remain asleep until (about an hour from this time) – Mr “Andiamo…Andiamooooh!” Aldo’s bakery delivery service – will come singing loudly in his boat while he delivers fresh baked goods to everyone anchored in da hahbah. This is the point he (loud singing guy who is somehow related to Aldo) will wake up dad who will mumble “oh jeez – that guy” and thus our day will begin.
I miss those days – and the challenge of keeping everything quiet until this point knowing that with Trey, all bets were usually off.
This is Callie – she’s our very fluffy bundle of love.
Callie was born in Lutz, Fl. She was found and brought to a shelter that is not known for keeping little kittens alive if they are not adopted. As luck (or God) would have it, one day a guy walked into the shelter, saw her, learned of her fate if she was not soon adopted and brought her south to a “no-kill” shelter in Sarasota.
An ad was placed in the local paper for “a beautiful calico kitten”.
One morning mom was sitting in her comfortable chair, sipping her morning coffee when she noticed the ad. “Hey Don”, she said to my father, “want to go look at a kitten?”.
“No, not especially” he answered – flatly, “but I will if you want me to.” I think he wanted to go with her but sometimes he would say this as I think he wanted to see how “into the idea” mom really was. And because mom loves cats – she was definitely into this idea.
In their 55ish years of marriage, my dad had come a long way about cats since meeting my mom. He was a dog person who really had no use for cats. Mom was a complete cat nut who loved having one or two cats around the house. The one cat they had at the time was a beautiful Maine coon cat (see post “I’m Trey and I’m going home!”) but mom had always wanted a calico (and unbeknownst to all of us, had been looking for one for quite a while) so she was excited to hop in the car and go to Sarasota.
Initially, when discussing cats, my father would say “you shouldn’t have to pay for cats, people should pay you to take them from them.” But this slowly evolved to “you shouldn’t have to pay for cats – people should give them to you.”
When they arrived in Sarasota and mom held her little bundle of joy, dad asked the inevitable question. “How much?”
“A hundred dollars”.
“Are you kidding?” dad asked (okay so, he may not have said it in exactly that matter but you get the point right? I mean, this is a kid-friendly blog is all I’m sayin’)
Mom explained to him about shots and needing to support no-kill shelters so he gave in and succumbed to his wife and Callie went home with them.
Callie’s little kitten intuition was so keen that she immediately “got it” that dad was not into cats. Every day she would sit in his lap with a loving look while he petted her and discussed cats “not being all that bad”.
When dad died of cancer a few years later, she was lying right next to him.
It’s never an easy thing to see how much cats grieve when their owners die. Callie and Trey had stayed with mom until she died. The two of them received an abundance of attention in the assisted living place where she was; but now, she is here with me – my little bundle of love.
I’m a firm believer in the fact that we don’t rescue cats; they rescue us.
It’s the situation here in New Hampshire right about now. Yep, it’s my guy Nate – named after the author, Nathaniel Hawthorne (don’t ask – it’s a thing).
Nate was rescued a little over 10 years ago. He is by far, one of the most affectionate little guys I have ever had and is quite masterful at head bonking, He is a brown-noser in the truest sense and also snores when he sleeps – but it is the most soothing sound ever.
Love, whether newly born, or aroused from a deathlike slumber, must always create sunshine, filling the heart so full of radiance, this it overflows upon the outward world.
My “emotional support Nate”. He’s been cruising to and from RI with me in the car every weekend. It’s a 2 hour and 6-minute drive. Usually, he wakes up when we’re south of Boston. I try to tell him what my mom used to say to me when we used to drive to NH to go skiing every weekend: “now put your head back down and go to sleep.” I always had trouble sleeping in the car – so does Nate.
He’s named after the author Nathaniel Hawthorne. I have a thing about naming cats after authors I love. Three of my favorite Hawthorne quotes are:
“Happiness is as a butterfly which, when pursued, is always beyond our grasp, but which if you will sit down quietly, may alight upon you.”
“Time flies over us, but leaves its shadow behind.”
“Every individual has a place to fill in the world, and is important, in some respect, whether he chooses to be so or not.”
Nate is an important emotional support / rescue cat.