So. This is what it is like to be my cat. (Specifically Opus. The other three are not this smart.)
ETA: Okay, maybe the bit about the bug? That’s Lucy.
So. This is what it is like to be my cat. (Specifically Opus. The other three are not this smart.)
ETA: Okay, maybe the bit about the bug? That’s Lucy.
OH MY DOG I HAVE SUCKED AT POSTING RECENTLY. I really haven’t got a good excuse. I don’t. There’s just been a lot of stuff going on and it’s been hard to find the time.
NO THAT’S NOT A EUPHEMISM, EVERYTHING IS FINE. Really, there’s just been a lot of actual stuff going on. It’s been not exactly busy, but I’ve had a lot of things taking up my brainspace and my time recently.
One of those things has been getting back on the fitness wagon. Again. Remember I mentioned that Cinnamon was upset because, during the Christmas holidays, we rearranged and redecorated the basement, “her” basement space? Yeah. Well, what we did, as cheaply as we could, was create a little exercise studio down there.
Now, our basement is not finished (yet) and we haven’t a ton of money to spare (yet), but over the holidays we took advantage of the Boxing Day/Week sales and decided to do a few things to make a space to work out and do yoga. So, we cleaned out excess junk, reorganized the rest of the junk, and then cleaned a space for our exercise machines (bike, treadmill, elliptical). We then hung some curtains to create another space where we put down some industrial carpet tiles and an area rug, and that’s our yoga space. As the year goes on and if we have a little free cash, we’ll probably think about putting in electrical and putting up some drywall if we can, but for now, it’s a cozy, welcoming place to do our yoga.
So what that means is that every day, we’re diligently exercising and logging our exercise online, and logging what we eat, and along with some family members, we have a little group to encourage each other along a more fit and healthy path. It takes a fair bit of time, but we’re starting to get into the swing of it a little bit. Still, it does take time and effort to keep yourself honest and update your numbers each day. As well, it’s an hour or so a day of exercise, but like I said, that’s been quite fun because of our new space. Which we really love, and that Cinnamon hates.
Which brings me to another time-suck: the perils of the unhappy peeing kitty. As you know, Cinnamon has taken to peeing in her beds, and on one occasion, on my bedroom floor. We suspected she was freaked out by the changes, as she often is, but just to be on the safe side, we took her to the vet for a full checkup. And, happily, there’s absolutely nothing wrong with her except she’s a little old lady. But, unhappily, that means we have a behavioural problem that is a little harder to troubleshoot.
But thanks to our awesome vet here, as well as an awesome vet who reads this blog who chimed in with some fabulous advice, we’re trying a couple of things to see if we can help her Cat Up and adjust to the new place. It’s still too early to tell, and she has peed a couple of times since starting her new “meds”. But on the plus side, she’s been coming and joining us in our yoga space in the last couple of days, happy and purring and chirruping at us, or curling up in a bed under the TV and just hanging out. Either way, it’s a marked improvement. AND, for those of you keeping score, SHE PEED IN HER LITTER BOX, RIGHT IN FRONT OF US, LAST NIGHT. AND THEN AGAIN THIS MORNING. So. Fingers crossed she is getting acclimatized.
The other thing that has occupied my time, or rather not, is being sick. Stinkerbelle was down with a cold for a week, as I mentioned, and it was one of those colds where she had a fever and just wanted to lie around. And that’s fine. But what’s taken my time is that she then ever-so-generously gave it to me. And so I just wanted to lie around. That was fun.
That, combined with a lack of sleep — my new exercise regime has meant the aggravation of my knee issues, which means I am awakened at least once a night and often three and four times a night by pain that needs dealing with in some way, with stretching or massage or getting up and walking about — has made me a treat to live with, let me tell you. But, we’re getting ice on it, and I am taking copious amounts of the strongest analgesics we own, and soon I’ll be starting physio again, so you just get on with it.
So, yeah. I don’t really have any excuse for not posting recently other than I’m a right bastard. But you know, I’m a more fit, more Zen, kitty-managing, cold-fighting, pain-tolerating bastard these days, so that’s got to count for something, right?
We have three cats.
We used to have four; our old girl Opus died in 2009 at the age of 20. For a long time, Opus was old and poorly. She had lots of health issues, and then when old age set in she began to get a little senile. Kitty alzheimers, if you will. Anyway, we were childless then, and were both working, and we could spend lots of money on vet bills for this and that for Opus’s many problems.
One of those problems was that she peed everywhere. Long-time readers of this blog are more than familiar with The Perils of Opus. It started as a massive infection, a medical issue. But it took us a long time to realize she was doing it, a small cat in a multi-storey house, and so by the time we actually found the problem, found the cause, and treated it — well, the medical problem had become behavioural. We felt horribly guilty, and she was an awesome cat, so we put up with it.
We tried everything and anything to fix the problem. For years, we tried. We cleaned up after her. And then, she got elderly, and there was no fixing the problem by that time. But we could not have her euthanized just because she had gotten old. We kept her, and the problem, contained in her last few years. Also, by that time, we had a baby, and we could not have the two of them together, or have Opus peeing in places the baby might be.
After Opus had died, and we began to clean up the house in preparation for our now-toddler to be roaming around. The damage was extensive. Opus had peed on and destroyed almost everything we had in storage in the basement — books, electronics, you name it. She had destroyed baseboards and carpets in the house, bookshelves and chairs. We purged everything we could, and lived with the stained and damaged but cleaned remnants we could not afford to replace.
And now, we have three cats.
The eldest, Cinnamon, is 15. She is, and always has been, incredibly nervous — the textbook definition of a “‘fraidy cat”. She’s afraid of her own shadow. She is very sweet, and thought of Opus as her mom and protector, and was bereft when she died. After Opus was gone, Cinnamon was reclusive for the better part of two years because of her fear of Stinkerbelle. In recent months, though, she’s gotten braver and more social as Stinkerbelle has gotten older and less noisy and unpredictable. It has been nice to see her.
She used to flee and hide in the basement, but now that she doesn’t and now that Stinkerbelle is older, we decided to make use of our basement space. In the last couple of weeks, we’ve spent lots of time and as little money as possible cleaning, putting down carpet, reorganizing, hanging drapes, and making the basement into a little exercise studio and yoga space. We want to get fit, and so we’ve been spending the time and money to make it a welcoming space to go to work out, someplace we want to be.
We love it. The problem is that Cinnamon most decidedly does NOT.
Cinnamon does not like change. We have moved things and changed things and she has completely freaked. We know this because she was so scared to go down into the new space, she peed. In her beds.
She has two little cat beds on the main floor. Cinnamon is the most dutiful little kitty soul I have ever met. She still, after 15 years, responds to commands we taught her as a kitten. She has in the past been trapped in a closed bedroom for a full day, and rather than pee or poop somewhere on the carpet — because she KNOWS she is not supposed to — she would find a scrap of paper or a bit of kleenex or whatever on the carpet and go on that. She’s THAT good a little girlie.
This is why she peed in her beds. Because she had to go, and she would never go someplace she’s not supposed to go unless she got really desperate. So she picked her beds, her favourite place in all the world, her own space.
I almost cried, I felt so bad for her.
But I almost cried, too, because she is an old girlie, and I had visions of the 10 years of pee we endured with Opus. And honestly? I cannot do that again. We cannot go back to that life again. We love our pets so very, very much, but we just can’t. We haven’t got the money, or the time, or the energy. And, frankly, we are coloured by the experience.
So I saw the pee, and I was so upset. I thought perhaps she might be sick, but she seemed in all other ways healthy and happy. She’s due for a vet check up soon, so we will have to check it out, but I know Cinnamon. I know her M.O. This was desperately avoiding the change occurring in the basement she has known for 12 years.
So I washed the beds, kept her restricted, watched her. She did it again, around the same time the next day — the only time she was alone in the playroom where her beds are, and not coincidentally the same time all three of us were downstairs in the basement doing some organizing and decorating. I also found a poop, in a corner of the kitchen, on a stray piece of tissue paper. That’s how we knew FOR SURE it was her, and probably not a health thing, but a fear thing.
Thus, we decided on some tough love.
Cinnamon has been sequestered in the basement for the last 24 hours, and probably will be until tomorrow evening. We’ve gone down and checked on her, and spent some time visiting with her, and exercised while she is down there. But we want her to be down there and spend some time alone, exploring, and getting used to the changes, and seeing that it’s the same space it always was — just looks a little different. We want her to get more comfortable with it. But most importantly, we want her down there with the NINE litter boxes she has used for most of her life, and to PEE IN THEM.
Not in the playroom, not in my room, nowhere else in the house. In the litter boxes.
Sometimes, we put Duncan and Lucy down there with her to keep her company, so she’s not lonely. Also, they’ll help make the place more familiar, and get their scents and fuzz all over everything so it will not be as scary. They don’t care — THEY’LL lay on the new carpets and roll around and all that. And they’ll use the boxes too.
We’re hoping that after a day or two to get used to things, she won’t be as scared about going down there, and therefore won’t be as scared to go down and use the boxes.
We hope. We hope she will respond, and adjust, and things can go back to normal. We hope we can see our sweet old girlie, who has otherwise never given us a lick of trouble in all her 15 years, back up in the main floor, chattering to us at breakfast times. We hope she will Cat Up, and be brave, and use the litter boxes.
We hope, because we could not bear the alternative. But at this point, as much as we love her, if faced with the alternative… it’s a decision we would be loathe to make. But we’d have to make it.
So, I have posted in the past about how Stinkerbelle loves her kitty Duncan, and how they are OMG BEST FRIENDS 4EVAH. In the beginning, it was about how Duncan had decided Stinkerbelle was His Baby, and would sleep outside her bedroom door (which he still does) and, occasionally, steal her toys.
Then, the tables turned, and suddenly That Girl was All. About. Her Kitty. She would call him, and follow him everywhere, and play with him. And, occasionally, steal his toys.
Well, they are best buddies, and that’s a fact. Well, except the other night, when he snuck into her room when we were checking up on her, and got stuck in there for a few hours, and then jumped up on her bed to sleep. And she was all WAKE ME AT YOUR PERIL YOU FELINE BASTARD.
So friendship has its limits. But the boundaries can be, if you pardon the pun, fuzzy.
This morning, Stinkerbelle and I were preparing to head out for a quick trip to the store. Yesterday, she began to sneeze and cough and by nighttime, her cold was full blown. So last night, when I put her to bed, I filled her humidifier reservoir and put it on for the night.
It’s the first time we’d used it this year, and, like everything involving water in this city, it died a slow, gunked-up death. The mineral buildup from our very tasty yet crazy hard water caused it to leak during the night, and so we binned it this morning. So we needed a new one.
Anyway, we were getting our gear on to go out to the store this morning, shoes and coats and such, and Duncan came by. He climbed up on a step to watch. And Stinkerbelle called out to him, “Bye, Duncan”.
And then she walked over and began hugging him. “BYE, DUNCAN! BYYYYYYEEEE!”
He was very tolerant, for a cat. He sat there with a look of mild disdain on his face, fur all fuzzed up backwards where she was hugging on him, eyes slightly bulging from the squeezing, as she called out her goodbyes. “Bye Dunc! See you later! Byeeee! Drive safe!”
Nobody knew what was coming next, least of all Duncan.
For Stinkerbelle, in her love for her bestest kitty friend, grabbed him about the head and neck, and PLANTED A KISS on him. RIGHT SMACK ON THE LIPS.
He sat there, stunned, for a moment, with a look of OH MY DOG WHAT THE FUCK JUST HAPPENED on his face. And then, he shook himself and ran off, with wild eyes. “NOOO! NO! BAD TOUCH! BAD TOUCH!!!”
It was like one of those moments in Peanuts, where Snoopy kisses Lucy, and she’s all “AAAAUUUGH DOG GERMS! GET THE DISINFECTANT!” If he could have spit and sputtered, he would have done.
And I have to tell you? I DIED. I laughed so hard I could not breathe. I CRIED from the laughing.
Stinkerbelle giggled and then carried on about her business.
Duncan, however, sat in the middle of the playroom floor, staring off into space. Looking stunned and slightly traumatized.
And somewhere in the house, Lucy and Cinnamon, who have endured YEARS of his chasing them and harassing them and his general being a weenie boy cat-ness… somewhere, they are LAUGHING THEIR FUZZY ASSES OFF.
Okay I apologize in advance but this will be very RANTY. Normally I sit down and try to compose my thoughts before I post, but today I cannot.
Because OMGWTF GUYS GUYS OMFG EARWIG.
Now normally I pride myself on not getting skeeved out by many things. I like mice and snakes and rats and other things that normally make women go EEK.
(Okay, well there’s fish in their natural habitat. But dude. Come on. That makes perfect sense.)
I had gone out to bring in That Baby’s swim stuff off the clothesline. I came in and put it and the handful of clothes pegs down on the kitchen table.
It was then I felt something tickle my hand.
I don’t normally scream like a girl about stuff, but OMFG THERE WAS AN EARWIG CRAWLING ON MY HAND.
And I screamed like a girl.
There is very little on this earth as DISGUSTING as earwigs. Well, earwigs and centipedes. SHUDDER. And there are so many in the backyard right now it is horrible. One must have come in on the laundry.
I screeched and flailed and flapped my hands about like a hysterical bird, and the thing went flinging off. Stinkerbelle was laughing hysterically and I was trying not to retch as my skin crawled in twenty-seven different directions, so doG only knew where the damn thing landed.
It was somewhere in the kitchen, there where I was standing.
I looked all over the place, but not too hard. I didn’t want to lift something on the table or whatever only to get a sneak attack from Disgustobug.
I was so skeeved out. I wanted to vomit.
Fortunately or not, we have white tile floors, and after a bit of looking about I FOUND IT. It was cowering under the kick of our island, hopefully stunned and dying from the impact of my flailing and the velocity with which it smacked into the floor.
But it didn’t die. It MOVED.
Now I own three cats. Used to be four. So what else are cats good for, except bug hunting? I thought to myself “How I wish Bubby were here! She’d get rid of the damn thing for me.” Bubby was the CHAMP of bug hunters. Didn’t matter where they were in the house or where she was, I just had to call out, “BUBBY!!! Come get the UGLY BUG!” and she would be ON THE CASE.
But Bubby is not here. Cinnamon is afraid of individual air molecules. Lucy is the cat version of Cosmo Kramer, or maybe that squirrel from the Ice Age movies.
So I called Duncan.
And I am here to tell you right now, for the record, that OMG DUNCAN IS SO USELESS.
I SHOWED him where the earwig was. I pretty near PUSHED HIS DAMN HEAD NOSE TO NOSE with the ugly bug.
And, thanks to the Stupidest Cat in the Universe, who just SAT AND WATCHED it, I think it’s now taken refuge under the island.
I mean, as it crawled around looking for a hiding spot, the thing practically CRAWLED UP HIS BUTT.
And he was all “BUH??”
So now, I sit outside watching That Baby in her pool, hiding from the Earwig Of Doom in my kitchen. I am still experiencing full body shivers of disgust and creepitude.
The Earwig of Disgustingosity and Vileness is RAMPAGING WILLY NILLY AROUND MY KITCHEN.
Duncan likely went off and fell asleep somewhere, completely unaware of anything around him.
I miss Opus.
Thank doG BDH is coming home early today.
Whoa. It’s been a time here at the House of Peevish. Bubby has left the building, and as she has moved on to bigger and better things, so do we.
(Actually, what she has moved on to is, I think, haunting the other cats and That Baby. Everyone has been displaying distinctly Bubby-like behaviours since her departure, and in general acting like weenies. So either she is haunting them — AND I WOULD NOT PUT IT PAST HER — or at the very least, she had a quick word with each of them before she left and left them explicit instructions. Being a weenie from beyond the grave — it’s her style.)
But the past week or so has caused us to take stock of things. And we have decided to get some things done. Lots of things. Moving things. Cleaning things. All sorts of things.
And then on Saturday, I threw my back out. And so, as I sit in my chair, it has been mostly BDH who has been doing things.
(Bah. I am sore and peevish. And feeling like an arse because I can’t do much to help BDH in his quest for order.)
There are all sorts of tasks that we’ve been wanting to accomplish, and for whatever reason, Opus’s death has kicked us into gear and we decided to do some of them. Or maybe it’s the onset of fall that’s done it, opening the windows and letting the cool air and sunshine in. But whatever it is, we’ve been cleaning and sorting and organizing like crazy.
Okay. BDH has. Whatever.
We put thousands of photos into albums. We washed and folded lots of laundry. We cleaned and put away Opus-maintenance items like her cage and her blankets and her litter box. We reorganized furniture. We made (or planned to make) food from the produce in our sadly neglected kitchen garden, like jerk and pesto and tomato sauce, which will then go in the freezer to be enjoyed all year.
We’re getting our lives in order, too. We got a calendar, one of those dry-erase deals, and put it up on the kitchen wall, so we can track appointments and Stinkerbelle’s swimming lessons and garbage days and whatever else. We started off a personal fitness challenge. We’re scouring websites and cookbooks for new or healthier or more interesting or more budget-friendly recipes to try. We’re making checklists. We’re imposing order on chaos.
It has been nice. It has been some change. Change is sometimes good.
The only problem? With all this moving and changing, there will come a time, hours or days or weeks from now, when one of us will go, “Have you seen my X?” And neither of us will have sweet fanny all of an idea where the heck we put X in all our flurry of cleaning and futzing and moving.
But it’s okay. Opus moved on, nice weather moved in, and we got moving. It’s all good, in its own way.
Opus 1989 – 2009
Goodbye, our girl. We love you. Sleep well. And thank you.
It is hard, watching someone get old. Watching as even the simplest movements get harder and harder. Watching their frustration as they can’t do the things they have been doing for so long. Watching them waver, and stumble, and weaken.
I have been watching Opus very carefully this past week. I am trying to be there for her if she needs it. Mostly she doesn’t. Mostly she just sleeps.
Sometimes, The Bubby of old comes out, and she comes to me and demands something. But even then, it is hard for her. Her once lusty bellow has become a weak mew. She cannot lift her head up to look up at me without losing her balance. And she doesn’t come to me that often anymore.
When she does, I am trying to take advantage of it. I cuddle her. She cannot tolerate much of a cuddle anymore. It is hard on her old bones, hard to balance on my lap, and she’s nothing but skin and bones anyway so I imagine after awhile the petting becomes somewhat uncomfortable. But I try to anyway.
I talk with her. I explain to her what will happen. I tell her our routine for the day — waking, breakfast, napping, lunch. All the things she normally does. I tell her that she will get a visit from the Doctor. She will be coming to give her a needle. It’ll sting a little bit, but if she just relaxes, she’ll get drowsy and then fall asleep. I tell her that after that, the Doctor will give her one more needle. And after that, she can sleep as long as she wants to. Nobody will wake her. No noisy baby will bother her, or bothersome Duncan or Lucy. Her old bones won’t ache anymore. Her stomach won’t bother her. Her hearing and eyesight won’t be a problem. She can rest.
I tell her how much I will miss her. She looks at me with her old, old eyes. I hope that she understands.
I tell her that I do not know what will happen. She knows me well enough to know where I am coming from.
I want to believe in Heaven, and that I will see her again. I want to believe in capital-H-Heaven like I was taught as a child. I really do. I want to believe it, but I mostly don’t. But I hedge my bets, just in case. I tell her that if there is a Heaven, to go and wait for me there. I tell her to keep the divot in the middle of the bed warm for me. I want to believe I will show up somewhere one day and she will be there, demanding to be fed and petted and doG knows what else. I tell her these things.
She looks up at me with her old eyes. She knows me well enough to know that I haven’t a clue, but hope.
I want to believe in some sort of reincarnation thing. I want to believe in some sort of lifeforce that does not leave. I want to believe that when she dies, her life force will stay on and maybe stay with me. I want to believe that maybe she will be here to comfort me and love me as she has done all this time. I want her to stay with me because I need her.
I tell her that I hope she doesn’t feel like she is no longer needed. She saw me through my entire adult life so far. She saw me through bad choices, bad boyfriends, bad jobs. She saw me through a good relationship and showed her choice was final by sitting on the candidate, the Big Damn Hero. She saw me through a horrible miscarriage, and through long, tiring, demoralizing infertility treatment. She saw me through adoption, and the arrival of That Baby in our lives. She saw me through to a family who could now rally around me and take care of me.
But I still need her. I have no clue about motherhood. I didn’t have a mom. I don’t know what moms do or be. I am flying by the seat of my pants here. I haven’t got any idea how to deal with what motherhood will bring. I need her to comfort me on my bad mommy days. I need her to enjoy dance parties with That Baby and me. I need her to cuddle after a long day of parenting.
She looks up at me with her old eyes. She knows me well enough to know that I need her, that I will miss her. But she knows me well enough to know that I will think of her instead of me. She knows me well enough to know that I will let her go.
She’s ready to go. She needs to go.
It’s been a tough week. But we’re getting to a place, after all the waiting and the watching and the talking, where I think we will be okay with it. We will not be without tears. But we are getting used to the idea.
Sometimes, it is tough making decisions affecting the ones you love. And it is not always pleasant.
We have made one of those tough decisions recently; and that is, to say goodbye to our beloved 20 year old cat, Opus. After a vet appointment on Saturday, and after steadily declining health over the past year or so, we made the mutual decision with our vet that it is Opus’s time.
She is old. So very old. She is feeble. And she is tired.
A natural death for a cat is most often a horrible thing to endure. It is not usually a peaceful, “go to sleep” kind of thing. It is often painful, and agonizing, and unpleasant. We don’t want that for Opus.
After her vet appointment, with the prospect of heart attack or kidney disease or god knows what else waiting in the wings, we made the decision that we want the most peaceful, quiet end for our girl that we can possibly provide. So we have chosen a day next week, and our vet will come to the house, and here, in the arms of the people who love her most in all the world, Opus will go to sleep for the last time.
I cannot tell you how hard this is, although I am sure many of you may understand. If you have read my blog for any period of time, or know me at all, you know how much I love my cats.
But Opus, she is one in a million. She is the awesomest of the awesome. She has personality to spare, and she’s too smart by half. She is one hell of a cat. She has ruled my world for 20 years, and I have loved it. She has been with me through some horrible times. And she has been with me through some of the best, too. She has been my best friend.
I fought with vets to keep her alive from the age of 7 weeks. And we kept on fighting through various health crises throughout her 20 years. She’s a tough old broad. And I mean that in the best sense of the world.
But it is time to stop fighting, and to let her have some rest. She deserves as much peace, and dignity, and love, as I can possibly give her in the end, to repay her for being as good and faithful and loving a pet companion as any human could hope for.
In her crabby, peevish, funny little heart, she has loved me as much as is possible for a little cat to do. And I have loved her more than I ever knew it was possible to love a pet. And I only wish, looking back, that I had loved her more.
When her time comes, a light in my life will go out. A noisy, bossy, funny little light will go out, and the world will be a sadder place.
When she dies, a little piece of my heart will die with her.
So, over the next week or two, if I am not around much, you’ll know why. I am taking the time to say goodbye to a friend.
Okay. So. We have Stinkerbelle. And we have 4 cats. Nothing should surprise me, right?
And yet? It does. Regularly.
Stinkerbelle loves her kitties. LOVESLOVESLOVES her kitties. LOVES! THEM! So much so that her first REAL word (not counting the “mama” and “dada” business because, let’s face it, EVERY child does that and it is mostly indiscriminate), based on her babbling right now will be “kitty” or “Duncan” (who is her kitty). Right now she is SO close on “kitty” but it comes out “didididididdydidididdddy”.
And the cats, they tolerate her surprisingly well, considering she barrels across the floor at them in joyous full shriek and pokes them and pulls out tufts of fur and stuff. Perhaps they sense it is all done in love. Or something.
So anyway, That Baby loves her kitties.
Last weekend was Donkey Day at the Donkey Sanctuary of Canada. You may recall that we went last year, and we have a fondness for the donkeys. We think it’s a great fundraiser for a great cause, not to mention a really nice day out. So we decided that this year we would go again, and introduce Stinkerbelle to the donkeys and hopefully begin a nice yearly tradition for our family.
We knew we would not be able to be long, what with That Baby having the attention span of a soap dish or a gnat or whatever at this age, and it was also a hot day. So we figured we would go for maybe half an hour or an hour and just have a nice visit.
We pulled into a parking space, loaded Stinkerbelle into her SuperStroller, and started up the lane toward the paddocks. There was a great turnout, which is always nice, with booths and tents and whatnot. But us? We go for the donkeys. (Specifically, we go so that I can pet and brush the donkeys. Let’s be honest.) So we made a beeline for the paddocks — one for mules, the other for donkeys.
And of course, they were all there in their gorgeous, aloof glory. We got to the fence, and got Stinkerbelle up out of the stroller so she could pet the lovely little mules by the fence. We picked her up, and turned to lean over the fence to the mules.
And then it began, like a siren or a rock concert or some other loud thing that is very loud.
Stinkerbelle was bellowing for all she was worth at the mules. “DIDDIDDIDDDDYDIDDIDDIDDDIDIDIDDYDIDDDDY!” Very LOUDLY, and excitedly.
She was trying to make friends with the kitties. Which were not, alas, kitties. Nor were they DEAF, I would imagine, so they wisely chose instead to ignore the extremely loud small child hollering her greetings to them in full-throated love.
So the donkeys were a hit. Inasmuch as she thought they were really BIG kitties, Stinkerbelle enjoyed the visit to the donkeys. Good thing for them that Donkey Day is just once a year. (Also, good thing for my hearing.)
But That Baby loves her kitties with an equally vociferous and heartfelt love, so she will be fine until next year’s visit. How do I know this? Well, two recent incidents come to mind.
Today, she was in her playroom, playing with her toys and shrieking at a video of (what else) animals while I made a meat stick for dinner in the kitchen. The cats have learned to just ignore her or flee when she comes around, so those who had not fled were in various states of repose.
Now, Opus is old. She can’t get around much anymore, so we have put a comforter out for her to sleep on during the daytime. And she’s as deaf as a post, so she mostly ignores That Baby anyway. But with That Baby, we have had to establish the rule that “That Kitty is NOT for playing with. She is for DECORATION ONLY.” And so That Baby is not allowed to touch that kitty or otherwise terrorize or manhandle her like she does with the others. And she is learning, but she needs reminding from time to time.
I had to remind her a couple times this afternoon. Luckily Bubby mostly slept through it all.
And then I looked up from my cooking to see That Baby, leaning down over That Kitty, TRYING TO LICK HER.
ACK. Poised on the brink of getting a fuzzy mouthful of old kitty.
You never saw a woman move so fast. There was no way that was going to end well for either party.
I relocated Stinkerbelle and went back to my work.
I looked up again.
Apparently, she had learned she was NOT to lick That Kitty. Which might explain, a little bit, why there were great, wet, drooly wads of Cinnamon fur on her cheek and chin.
She is fine. Cinnamon is hiding and won’t come out. And Bubby is shouting at me, trying to convince me that she is traumatized by the Great Licking Child of ’09 in a ploy for food.
That Baby and kitties. Is it too late to get her interested in, say, Chia pets instead?
Reason #16 why we are not considering adopting again at this time:
I already have more kids than I can handle.
(Yes, that is my well loved and well worn, still has a ton of life left in it, $25 jogging stroller from Kijiji.)
SCENE: An afternoon at The House of Peevish. Stinkerbelle is in her exersaucer, watching “Annie” and waiting for the post-lunch poop. Mom is in the kitchen, having some lunch. The cats are in various states of repose around the room: deaf, elderly Bubby curled up with Cinnamon on a blanket under the window, Lucy sunning herself on the windowsill, Duncan curled up under an end table amid the toys.
A breeze blows.
The baby gate, leaning up against the wall, catches the breeze and falls to the floor.
Baby Gate: BLAM!!!! (Well, it doesn’t SAY “blam” but it falls down and makes a ridiculously loud “blam” noise.)
Various cats freak the hell out and scramble for cover. Even deaf old Bubby is up and on the alert. Cinnamon and Duncan are poofed to a ridiculous size. Lucy falls out of the window.
Stinkerbelle: HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA! (belly laughing uproariously)
~ THE END. ~