Tuesday, December 10, 2013

This has almost nothing to do with writing.

Once in a while, even a writer needs a bit of a change. So, here's today's tale.

The call came at ten o'clock at night. That's always worrisome. Especially with children, even if they are grown. But, at the other end of the phone was a timid, weak, little voice asking if she could please talk to Grandpa. It was one of our granddaughters. And with a poignant plea!

Could we please take her cat? The cat bite her dad and he said the cat had to go. She didn't want to take it to a shelter so if the cat could come live with us, she'd help take care of it. They lived close enough, only a few miles away, so she could come play with him and bathe him, feed him, take care of him, if Grandpa would say he'd take one orange tomcat. Her idea, not ours.

Of course, Grandpa agreed. I mean, who can deny the pleading of one of your grandchildren.

So, after many years of no pets, (the last pet passed away soon after the kids left the nest), and a great retirement, which meant time to travel and explore our country, we were suddenly the new owners of a big, mean, orange cat. Yes, he did bite and we immediately had to change his name. I'll only use the initials, and let you figure out the rest, because that cat was an animal with a mind of his own. He did his own thing in his own time, often going for an arm or leg with his mouth open. So his name became L.S. because that's what we called him when he was being obstinate or mean, which was most of the time.

However, somehow, over the next six years, that big orange ball of fluff grew into a loving cat, constantly needing a reassuring touch, a rub or a pat morning, noon and night. He even started talking to us when he wanted attention. Of course we couldn't understand a sound he made because we didn't speak 'cat'.

When one of our sons called to say his crew found a tiny black kitten under the shelves in a big box store, I looked at our big guy and said, "Why not?" L.S. probably needed the company. So the kitten came to live with us. Wally, a black tuxedo, wasn't much of a companion for L.S., though. Too much age difference, I guess.

We took a trip to our vet in search of a kitten, one who could be a playmate for Wally, and brought home cat number three, a three year old, part Siamese, with an attitude. At the vet's, Celine jumped into my husband's lap and stayed there. We really had no choice.

Since then, five years ago, we've discovered those cats are our entertainment, provide company, give us a lot to talk about and definitely lower our blood pressure. All three want attention, even when I'm engrossed on working on my latest novel, or my husband is involved in working on some of my promotional material.

L.S. is particularly fond of settling in on the hard copy of the latest manuscript my husband is editing for me. Celine is especially pleased when I decide to work at my desk, because she takes a giant leap, landing in the middle of my notes, then stretching out, scattering papers all over the floor, so I have room to scratch her back. All three love to jump on chairs, tables, desks, computers, even printers and sing loud and clear. "Time for us!"

And, yes, we do take time out and play with them. Okay, we admit it. It's good for them and good for us. That was one late night phone call we'll never regret taking. And maybe I just might feature a cat in my next book.

Allison Knight

4 comments:

Big Mike said...

Hey Rep G

The things we do for out G kids. Had a similar call regarding our Emma's new puppy (snowball) and could it come with her when she stayed with us, Now, I like dogs but did the mess thing with my two boys and their dogs decades ago so new house rule was no animals. Yet when your grand daughter pleas, all rules and barriers kind of melt into the background.

Michael Davis (Davisstories.com)
Author of the Year (2008 and 2009)
Award of Excellence (2012)

Julie Eberhart Painter said...

As a cat lover, I can relate.

Our little FL black panther, Inkie, is the sweetest, most caninish type of feline. She loves everyone who comes to the door...except our oldest daughter who has 4 boutique cats. Inkie was so mean to Sue that Sue asked if she'd ever attacked anyone else.

We call Sue's cats jewelry

Linda Rettstatt said...

I've never once regretted adopting my cat, Binky. We get along because we're both slightly neurotic. I went in search of a younger cat, one or two years old. But I found six year old Binky who had been surrendered to a shelter by the owner who had raised her from a kitten. She was terrified and confused. I knew the feeling, so I brought her home. Sometimes what or who we need is handed to us at just the right time.

Nikki said...

We've always had a cat or three. The first one was called BC, because he was always jumping on the bed at, um, inopportune moments.