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Ok, another story part 1

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IammyaspectofUs
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Posted 07/12/06 - 10:06 AM:
Subject: Ok, another story part 1
We have three cats. They have a big effect on the ebb and flow of the happiness in our house. We don't have human kids and well these guys are our surrogates. For me, it’s more that I am the husband of my wife, and my wife seems to treat them as her kids.
She makes all their food; she combs them and fusses over their health and happiness. They are rich kids as far as cats go. About a year ago, a stray and a relative of theirs started visiting us through the cat door. He would come in and talking the whole way till we would tell him to turn around and go back out, and he would. It was as if he was saying I come in peace and I think you all have an interesting set-up here, do you mind if I come in? As time passed he would come further into our home while we slept, he would come right to our bedroom and announce himself. We would then wake up and take notice of him, and of course ask him to leave and he would without any protest. He would talk all the way out the door too. Bye nice to see you, I’ll come again in a few days just dropped bye to say hi. After some time we just stopped asking him to leave and he would stay and observe us observing him for a short while and then leave. Eventually he would come close enough to be petted and even picked up. We fed him well with the good stuff and he would play in the catnip. We called him Phillip and I don’t know why. His guy parts where still intact and we decided that he was probably the father of at least one of our boys. So since he was a relative we couldn’t just keep throwing him out on the street all the time.

He had battle scars and wounds all over but he never was aggressive to any of us even though our queen was toward him. A queen is girl cat like a bitch is a girl dog.
He would just treat her protests like she was a kid telling a stupid joke.
As spring rolled in he began showing up every few days with new signs of his fighting and his life on the streets. He was looking worse and worse, he was loosing weight too. We started to notice that he wasn’t healing so well anymore either. But he always had that loving hello like a pleasant traveler looking for a good meal and conversation to share with willing strangers.
He seemed to have an uncommon intelligence in his manor, he was very interesting to observe.

Anyway, we decided that he was going to get neutered if he was going to live under our roof.
We took him in to the vet and since he was a stray they tested him and he was positive for feline leukemia. It’s a bit contagious and fatal. They offered to put him down right there but my wife refused. She brought him home and called a holistic vet. He assured us that it was treatable and that the contagious nature would never go away so we would need to find a home for him to keep our cats safe. By this time he was looking pretty bad getting skinnier by the day and loosing energy. So we put him in the garage and started to feed him real well and pump him full of vitamins. He was healing and gaining weight right away and fast, his coat was looking so much better just in a few days time. But he was a wild stallion in a cage. He needed to roam his territory, and his moans and cries of loneliness for his world had us in sympathetic pain. So my wife brought a harness and leash home to walk him. “Walk him”? I scoffed, “He won’t like that” I said as if I knew.
She harnessed him up and off the two went down the city street like they were old pals.

Being married to this woman I have learned that if you want to participate in anything really cool you may have to dip your head in the humility, follow along and pretend like nothing was said before. So I did. A couple of trips around the block and then back to his cell, I mean room.

The next evening I took him out. We just started walking like we have always done this or something. I let him lead me but he never pulled or was aggressive. If I stopped so did he. He would look up and then start again and I would follow. We went about five blocks down to the elementary school marking his territory along the way. We took a right and cut through the middle of the school and up a few blocks spraying a fine mist every fifty feet or so as we went along. I was getting the tour. Sometimes he would stop for a moment and look into certain front yards, I realized that he was sensing other cats and assessing who they were. Later I would realize that he was also making sure everyone was where they were supposed to be too. We took another right and started down that street. We came to a low brick wall positioned in the front yard of a corner lot. He hopped up on the wall and began looking around in all directions. A little excitedly at first but then calmed and just sat and surveyed the happenings. It was a great vantage point, you could see in four directions and far from here. The intersection seemed big from this little wall, and this was his land. The lion king on the unnaturally protruding rock came to mind, and all the old perceptions we had of him as smart and interesting beyond the norm came into focus as his regal nature found its frame of reference in my perception. After a minute of basking in his majesties glow my gaze shifted to his lands and I saw what he saw. I saw all of the small movements of the other cats around the neighborhood. I saw how interesting they looked each having their own ways with the land and the night air.

He was proud of his position on this wall. All could see him and he could see all. He sat and watched with contented eyes.
I on the other hand was getting cold and wanted to get back to my kingdom. I let him rule for about another ten minutes and then began to suggest that he get off of the wall with little tugs and sayings of “come on buddy” and “lets go home”.
Lets go home seemed so absurd at the time, so I didn’t use that one again, he was home.

He sat like an anchor and pretty much ignored me with skill. I persisted and so did he, and this was his house so he was winning. After a time of that I tried to tug him off the wall with the leash. A very annoyed look from him stopped that tactic right away.
So I waited a minute longer and then gently picked him up and began walking with him squirming a bit but not giving it too much effort. After we made it about twenty feet he turned and gently put all of his teeth around the end of my nose for a second and then turned away and let out a great big hiss!

I was stunned for a second or two then I just put him down to let both of our traumas pass a bit. I felt fortunate that he respected me enough to not bite me. But his communication was loud and clear “I want to stay here please!”

He stood at my feet in his harness and leash, his tail whipping back and then forth in frustration. It took some convincing but I talked him into walking on his own. The way back home was not very pleasant for either of us. He was acting like a child that didn’t want to take a bath, and I like a determined parent herding and prodding at times and just walking slowly at others. After a few sit down protests and a couple of small tantrums we made it home and I put him in his room with dinner. He cried out a few times but that was all I heard. In the morning he was glad to see us and glad to eat Cindy’s wonderful mixture of meat and vitamins.

More to come
libertygrl
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Posted 07/12/06 - 4:20 PM:

my sister had a cat that died of feline leukemia. he was a lot like phillip - an old battle axe with scars galore. the vet said that feline leukemia is like AIDS among cats.

you've got a really nice flow going with this, iammy. i'm a cat lover myself and the apartment i'm in doesn't allow pets. :embarrassed: i miss my kitties. looking forward to hearing more of phillip's story.

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"When I die, I want to come back as my wife's cat."
--a standup comedian i heard years ago
IammyaspectofUs
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Posted 07/12/06 - 11:19 PM:

Thanks lib.

As always, I'm looking for critiques on the writing.

I gotta tell my wife that one. LOL
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