Everything seems much as normal for Lilith now – her pluth is growing back, the scar has healed nicely, and she’s starting to be more … herself. She is, occasionally, taking herself through the catflap; my heart is in my mouth, but I guess I’ll get used to it, and I wouldn’t attempt to confine her anyway.
Interestingly, since she came home, the boys have let her eat on her own; we put two bowls of food down every morning, and usually it’s just a melée, but since she’s been poorly Ron, Mustrum and Henry have gathered round one bowl, and left Lily to her own devices with the other one, only eating from it when she’d left. That changed yesterday, and Ron was troughing with her, and today too. Perhaps they sense her improvement too.
So, it’s been vile and horrible and expensive, but she is as well with it as is possible to be, I think. And better a three-legged Lily than no Lily at all. I’ve taken to calling her the ZombieCat, as she lurches about, but in truth she’s now moving pretty well. A couple of things threw her last week – a leap onto the landing bannister was a tad over-ambitious, and I thought she was going to topple over. And when she spotted the laundry basket was open, she made her usual dive for it, lost her balance on the edge and fell in.
The most disturbing thing is that she now looks exactly like Liessa, to the point where Pete and I have both found ourselves addressing her as Bada. This is scary; Liessa was already The People’s Princess reincarnated, and now she appears to have passed her Badaness on to Lilith. We are afraid.
This is the question that some people are asking! So …
Last Tuesday, 23 June, we noticed that one of Lily’s stitches had come out, and we were a little worried about the wound. I rang Kingston, who said to bring her down, so Pete did so. They checked her over, and were perfectly happy with her, and didn’t charge us!
Two days later, she was back to have the rest of the stitches out; I bowed out of that one too and sent Pete. Apparently it took one vet, one blob *and* one veterinary nurse to accomplish it 🙂 (They didn’t charge for that either – I’m impressed). She was supposed to have her jabs too, but she was (and still is) a bit sniffly, so they didn’t want to do it.
Other than that, she’s been living in the bedroom. We gave up with the cage on Tuesday (I think), and Lilith decided that where she wanted to be was on my pillow. Day or night. So I have had to share it at night. Her side has a regal purple towel on it, but she is no respecter of boundaries. She’s eating well, and showing non signs of wanting to go through the cat flap, and I’m quite, quite happy for her to be an indoor cat, thanks.
Yesterday, she came down, and spent the afternoon on our laps (not at the same time, obviously, but back and forth). She then decamped to the kitchen and curled up on the worktop, where she stayed for the rest of the day. And the night. But I was good, and only got up three times to check she was OK.
Her pluth is returning, and she actually swiped me the other morning, which was lovely – our horrible Lily is returning!
So, she went in the crate on Monday night. She was not pleased. She spent most of the night banging and crashing about, in a temper, as we thought. However, in the morning, the score appeared to be Lilith 1 : Cone 0. She’d managed to remove it during the hours of darkness. We looked at her, we looked at it, we thought “no, thanks”. And she is so much more comfortable without it, and doesn’t seem to be pulling at her stitches at all (and the wound looks to be healing properly), we’ve left it off.
She has a ravening appetite, but after Tuesday morning’s escapade, she’s been content to stay in the house. Most of yesterday was spent curled up on Pete’s hessian backpack, on a cool, quiet shelf in the bedroom; presumably, at some point, the pack annoyed her in some way, and she cast it to the ground. But she looked relaxed, and comfortable, and properly asleep. Apart from her Sheba morning and night, she consumed 60g of roast turkey during the afternoon (Ron and Henry obligingly finished the rest), and then she moved downstairs to sleep on the dining table when we were in the living room. She can jump a bit higher, move a little easier, every day, and I am utterly confident that she will cope, and cope well, in the future.
Considering the practicalities of stuffing a cat in her condition, with her attitude, into one of our front opening cat boxes, Pete cycled off to the vets yesterday and picked up a top loading wire basket. Astonishingly, neither Argos nor Pets at Home stock these; now we have one, they seem far nicer for most cat journeys.
We put her back in her cage last night, not least because we are keeping the cat flap shut during the day (the boys can go though the back door and over the walls. I’m hoping she, er, won’t). But at night, they need to come and go at will, and I’m not ready to let her out the front before the stitches are out. She banged about a bit, but settled quite quickly, so that’s where she’ll be at night for a while, and during the day too if we’re out for any length of time. The cone stopped her getting through the flap, but now it’s been vanquished, we need to ensuring that she is safe. And the neighbourhood, come to that.
We also hear that the Woman Up The Road has now moved out. Thank $deity for that. Pity I couldn’t stiff her for some of the bill, though.
So, we picked her up yesterday at about 5.30. Long chat with the vet, bore away powdered antibiotics, and liquid painkillers, so no pilling. Hurrah! We drove home carefully, and decided to take her straight upstairs in her carry basket, so that she could emerge in her own time, and be quiet. And before we turned round, she’d lurched off along the landing like an extra from World War Z, down the stairs, and onto one of the big red beanbags, where she settled for quite some time. Ron was wary, Mustrum just said “Oh, Lily’s back” and Henry was really, really unhappy; I guess she looked like Lilith, but smelled wrong.
During the course of the evening, she went into the tube on the cat tree, into a couple of boxes of DVDs awaiting collection, into a basket of Stuff, into an empty cardboard box, and onto the other big red beanbag. In passing, she snarfed the remains of our smoked salmon omelettes, before eventually settling on my lap, having rejected Pete’s first.
She had some tinned tuna for tea, laced with antibiotic, then accompanied us up to bed, where she slept on my pillow all night. I, however, barely slept at all, because she is wearing a cone, and every time she moved, she disturbed me. And it was Too Hot. Tonight, she’s going in a dog cage, so we can all get some rest.
This morning, she remained on the pillow after we got up, then took herself off downstairs and used her litter tray (we put out a shallow one for her), scattering litter everywhere. But still, this is good. And then … she vanished. One moment there, the next gone. We called, we checked everywhere, we panic’d a bit. then Pete got the big ladder from upstairs and spotted her in next door’s yard. Which means she gone across the tool shed, across the log store, across the other log store and onto the bike shed roof, before going over the wall.
We wondered what to do. Far too hot to shut all the doors. So we decided to check whether she could make it back. I made the call that brings the Tribe home for treaats: “Iggeeeeee”. And over the wall she came, and was rewarded with tuna, and Sheba, and painkillers and antbiotics. Since then she’s been slumped on the back of the sofa, on the beanbag, in the bedroom doorway, and is now under the bed, draped over the Roomba. No, we don’t know why. We guess she’s mending 🙂
Back to the vet on Thursday for a wound check, and then again in a few days to have the stitches out. I honestly think she finds the cone more irritating than her missing leg; she’s a pragmatic and courageous little beast. Here’s the bill so far. Ouch. But the alternative would be no Lily, and what use would that be?
I keep my phone on silent at night, with only a few family numbers allowed through. So when I woke up on Sunday morning to find a slew of calls, and a text message, all from unrecognised numbers, I was a bit worried. The text read:
“Your cat just been splattered outside linnet. Unlucky pall tired ringing. Fancy a cat kebab”
Which was really rather upsetting, to put it mildly*. Other calls turned out to have been from the local 24-hour Sainsburys, and a vet, who had left a message to say that Lily had been hit by a car, and to call them. I did so, and was told that she’d broken her leg, and it looked quite nasty – a compound fracture – and we should go down to the surgery. This really isn’t what we wanted to wake up to, particularly as we both had hangovers, but we trundled down to Kingston Vet.
We went through the options, and were told that it was possible that they wouldn’t be able to fix the fracture, at which point she’d be referred to an orthopaedic surgeon. Which would cost thousands, mean months in recovery, and might not work. Or we could elect for the leg (a back one) to be amputated. But they wouldn’t know until they did x-rays, and they would call us. We went to see her, and she was as high as a pluth kite on painkillers, but still looked her vile self, bless her.
So we came home, and fretted. We put it on Facebook, and loads of people had comments, all supportive, about how well tripod cats did. The vet rang back and said the X-rays looked bad, and they recommended amputation; we said “yes”. What else could we do? Not going to put her through months of pain. They rang back a bit later, and said it was the right decision – the bone was in lots of little pieces. There was a lot of muscle damage, apparently, and they were also concerned about infection, so industrial quantities of antibiotics were called for.
On Sunday morning, they phoned again. They were a little concerned that she hadn’t used her litter tray, but they thought she might be trying to work out her balance, and they weren’t going to let her go home until she’d had a pee. Other than that, she was doing well.
This morning, they phoned to say that she was making an excellent recovery, that they were very pleased with her, and would we like to take her home?! So we are collecting her this evening, which is splendid news. A friend has lent us a dog cage (the one we used for the Siamese rescue cat), in case she needs to be kept quiet, but knowing Lily, she’ll be hurtling around pretty soon.
On Saturday afternoon, the bill had reached £1,060. God knows what it is now, or quite how we’re going to afford it, but afford it we must.
I hold the mad woman up the road at least partially responsible for this. By trying to adopt Lily, she had widened her roaming range to include Princes Avenue, a road with masses of bars, and which heaves with traffic and people until the early hours of the morning. Her normal boundary was about 50 yards from there, and she would not go past there – it was like a force field. Perhaps I could ask her for some of the bill … Apparently she’s moving out today, and it can’t come a moment too soon.
*I was incandescent, actually, but I texted back “thanks for letting me know”. And then thought to myself that he’d been partying up on Prinny Ave, that he was probably pissed, and that he still took the time to get the number off her collar and contact me. Which was very kind.
[as seen on Facebook]
When the creator, in her infinite wisdom, looked on the universes that she has created, she realized that a controlling force was necessary to keep it all in balance. Or so the story goes.
She looked at the beauty of galaxies forming, colliding and reforming. She saw the brittle balance between the forces she has created and then looked down at the earth to where man was having trouble arranging his fig leaf.
When she pondered the fine harmonic resonance needed to keep the universe from spinning apart, from fragmenting without order, she decided to create another being to take over the task of management, leaving man free to fight with his leaf.
She saw that man was going to have enough trouble finding the balance between self seeking and greater good to saddle him with the giant task of holding the universes in balance.
It is then, so the story goes, that she decided to share the task amongst one species on earth, a special creation that would accomplish this task without the knowledge of man, lest he try to take that over as well.
Showing even more wisdom, she decided to share the task evenly amongst all the members of that species. Together they would maintain balance by sharing the power given their minds.
From that day to this, one has only to look up at the sky to see that balance has been maintained, they have done a wonderful job of keeping the universes safe for us to do our daily misdeeds. It is time now to recognize the incredible sacrifice this noble selfless species has made to keep all of us lesser species in space.
Shared within their DNA, passed on from mother to children in an unbroken line from then to now, they remember and produce continually the precise harmonic frequency that the universe needs to remain intact. This frequency reaches dimensions of hearing and senses we do not posses. The fragment of the whole that we can sense is comforting, we could not begin to comprehend the part we do not hear.
Thus we find this hard working species devoting their lives to gathering the energy to gain the correct meditative mind wherein the creation of the harmonic vibration is possible. They work alone, when awake, but even when sleeping they work on creating the ambiance for the others to continue their work.
From the time they are in the womb of their mother, they are surrounded by the hum of the right vibration. They will memorize and practice this vibration, they will send it towards the heavens, forced upward by the most noblest of intentions and the purest love.
When in a group they will double their impact, lying close to where the vibration can resonate on multiple echo chambers, even through the very blood and organs of the individual. There is no end to their giving.
The combined frequency, coming from every corner of the world, floats upwards, buoyed by love, to the remedy of the universe, to the saving of us all. The work is exhausting, the work is exact. But even when sleeping the work continues.
There are times of crisis, when more energy is needed. There are times when the energy is wrong and the universe is about to fly apart. That is when you will find them working overtime, creating the correct aura, meditating, 24/7. All this they do without us even knowing and have love to spare for us.
So when you pass by your cat sleeping in the window today, say thanks in silence so as not to disturb the energy. Thank her for your life, for the thankless task she is providing. When you buy food for her tomorrow, remember she is in charge of your future wellbeing. When she gives you that stare, it may be a good idea to pay attention, for all our sakes.
For today we need her to purr her vibration to the universe, so that balance may be maintained. We need her to rest and to meditate, so that she might have the energy to join her force with those of all the other cats. We need to treat her well so she might be disposed to doing so.
Today I thank the guardians of the universe, the warriors of old. I thank you for your love and positive energy and I vow to do what I can to help you in your important task.
Let there be love.
[link to the video, in case you can’t see it embedded]
A friend of ours posted on Facebook yesterday that she was trying to organise the rehoming of a rescue Siamese cat, aged about five, whose owner was no longer able to keep her. And before I could even start working on Pete to suggest that we took her, my daughter Clare fell upon the news with glee. She lost her Siamese boy last year (he had been our Siamese boy first, but went to live with her a few years ago, along with Eskarina, the Balinese wah-bag).
After a bit of to-ing and fro-ing, we went to meet the cat last night. And brought her back with us, ready for onward conveyance to Norfolk tomorrow. She is now ensconced in our bedroom in a large dog crate, with soft bed, litter tray and food. She spent last night hissing and spitting at any of the Tribe she could see – a little unfair, as they weren’t remotely bothered by her, and clearly were a bit puzzled by all the fuss. She then decided to try and dig her way out of the crate, so everything is covered in cat litter. I’m currently calling her “Jackson”, as Clare said that she is clearly the Jackson Pollock of cats.
She’s a beautiful, feisty little thing, and I’m sure she’ll settle down well with Poppy the rescue cat. Esk’s reaction is likely to be noisy, and I’m quite glad I’ll be 150 miles away for most of it 🙂 And having driven Siamese cats on long journeys before, I can’t say I’m looking forward to tomorrow, but she will have a lovely life down there.
Or, of course, we could keep her …
Certain of the Tribe – Lilith and Mustrum in particular – like to occasionally relieve themselves in the bathroom basin, or the kitchen sink (wee only, I hasten to add!). We don’t find this too much of an issue, to be honest; it’s easily cleaned, and if they must pee outside the trays, those probably the best places (the great outdoors excepted, of course).
We have a lovely, huge shower cubicle in our bathroom. We leave the doors open when it’s not in use, as otherwise it gets remarkably cold in there (the heat from the radiator cannot penetrate the glass doors). And, as Pete said, it was only a matter of time before one of the little darlings availed themselves of it, and used it as Yet Another Basin. Still, easily cleaned, as we have a dual head shower, one of which can be waved around. But of course, the basin is glass, and the kitchen sink is ceramic, while the shower tray is acrylic, and I really don’t want their dear little claws gouging scratches into it.
But it’s too damn cold to leave the shower doors shut …
One last photo of my much loved Iggy, innabox. Those golden pears survived, and are hanging above the fire.
I still miss him dreadfully, but I deal with it – I don’t go to look out the window for him thirty times a day, or keep listening for his distinctive rowl. But I was slightly overcome in Morrisons this week, when confronted with packs of mixed nuts in their shells. Neither P nor I eat nuts, but we always bought a pack for Igpuss, who liked to fish them out of their bowl and bat them round the room. Such little things undo us …
The rest of the Tribe are well and happy, and P is adamant that there will be no more kittens for a while, so we shall continue with a Gang of Four for the time being.
So we all wish you the compliments of the season, and may your cats be gifted with dew kissed baby grouse in 2013.
We went away to Wales for a few days, and now we have returned, and it is now 19 days since Iggy has been seen or heard. We have to accept that he is gone, and it is very hard indeed. He would have been 14 years old yesterday, 28th August, and just typing that has made me weep again.
Igor, to give him his proper name, came to us at the beginning of December 1998, the first of several Bengals we have had the honour to live with. The breeder said his stripes would turn into spots – they never did really, but we didn’t care a jot. He had a beautiful face, with wise eyes.
He was a clever cat, who could work out things like who was making the red laser dot dance across the floor, and how to open the microwave. He was also defined by his dignity, which he never, ever lost even under the most adverse of conditions, such as making an unorthodox descent from the fridge, or having his spotty tum scritched (which he loved). We always described him to people as a cat of gravitas and distinction, and he had a real presence.
Iggy loved warmth, and could be found following the sun round the house, and hogging all the heat from the woodburning stove, sitting so close to its glass door that his fur was actually touching it.
He did, of course, lead a life of tragedy, as evinced by his constant rowling, but he bore it with fortitude.
Pete and I have lived with many cats over the years, and have loved them all, but Iggy stole my heart the day I met him, and I find it so hard not to have been with him at the end. Go well, my beloved Igpuss – and good hunting, free of pain and restored to splendour.