My writing here and general web surfing has petered out lately because we have ‘stuff’ going on here that is exciting for me, maybe boring for anyone else. However last week the excitement turned to devastation. We live down a quiet country lane, one of the few places in this traffic crammed island that it’s fairly safe to keep pets, but last Tuesday some idiot must have come belting down our little lane, knocked down and killed one of our kittens … and then just drove off.
Yes, I know accidents happen but to me there was no excuse not to stop, ring on our doorbell and face the music. There are only two property entranceways at this point of the road so it wasn’t hard to guess where she belonged. Instead she was left, to be found by our neighbour who was out walking his dog.
Phoebe is gone. Our little darling. I can’t describe to you how affectionate she was, how very much she loved my husband in particular, and with her extremely gentle ways how loved she was by both humans and our other cats. She made the sweetest little pipping sound when she wanted to say hello, she often lay on my desk beside me here as I typed or worked on photos, and she was the smartest little soul you could come across. For us, all our pets have always been very much members of the family but at the stage we’re at in our lives – with children moving away – the companionship that these little furry friends provide is just priceless. I’ve cried so much in this last week.
Phoebe’s sister, Bo, is quite shell shocked. She has been sticking close to me, her normally sprightly and playful behaviour has become quiet and listless and at times like my usual sharing of a little bit of turkey at lunch time, she goes to the door to look for her sister. It’s all totally heart-breaking.
Bo and Phoebe (right)
On Tuesday I was thinking that was really it for me, I simply couldn’t have any more pets because losing them is just too painful, but two days later the strangest thing happened. I was at the computer again, mindlessly web surfing when totally by chance I came across an ad on one of our local websites for kittens. It’s not that I can or want to replace Pheebs but that ad started me thinking that not only would getting a kitten give Bo (who is only 16 months old) someone to play with again, just the idea of a new young life around the house was easing the pain in my heart. The thing is, advice by vets to neuter/spay all cats that are not kept for breeding has been so very effective here that finding kittens to buy is always extremely difficult – usually it’s a case of hearing about a litter through ‘someone who knows someone’. If ads appear, they inevitably prompt dozens and dozens of calls and if you’re not quick to phone you well and truly miss the boat. What were the chances, I thought, that any of these kittens were still available a full two weeks after the ad had been placed? I broached the subject of getting another kitten with my husband -who has been equally devastated by the loss of ‘his’ special little cat, and to my surprise he too had been thinking that what might help us all, both human and animal, is to introduce a new young life to our home.
On Saturday we phoned the number on the ad and to our surprise the kittens were still available. The long and the short of it all is that in two weeks time we will collect two beautiful kittens. Yes, it had to be two according to my sweetheart of a husband, because no kitten should be re-housed alone.
I miss Phoebe each and every day but at least, in the space of a week, my feelings have gone from total devastation to hope for the future, when I know there will be sunshine in this house again.