27 September 2010
Tom, Dick and Harry
When I was five years old, my brother was teaching school in Bristol. He came home one weekend with a shoebox that had a couple of holes cut into the side. Inside it was a small gray kitten and thus began my lifelong affinity with cats.
I named the kitten Tom but a year or so later, we found out it should really have been Thomasina! By that time, however, my Mother had brought 2 more kittens from a distant relative who lived in a nearby town. They were black and white. I named them Dick and Harry. Harry also should have been named Harriet but Dick was Dick!
Through the years, I acquired others. At one point, I was raising white Persians. They were all mostly outside cats. We lived on a farm for heaven's sake. My Dad needed the cats in the barn and the outbuildings to keep the rodents down. One summer there was a total of 13 - the most I had at any one time.
They all had names - most of them just as creative as Tom, Dick and Harry. There was Moe, Curly and Larry; Snowflake and Snowball, etc.
The last two years I was in college, I lived in an apartment off campus and had a Siamese cat named Chessie. Although she did not sleep on my bed, she jumped up in bed every night to rub her nose to mine as if to say "Good night".
My husband said I was a "cat whisperer". It didn't seem to matter where we were, somehow cats found me. Even while touring the House of Seven Gables in Salem, Mass., their resident black cat came up to me and rubbed on my legs.
I have two now - Angel and Cleo. Their stories are for a different post! Cleo is the gray tabby at the top of this post. Angel is the black and white with the black nose. Shadow was Angel's companion and partner in crime for many years. We had to put him to sleep in May 2009.