The writing challenge asks my reaction to a black cat crossing my path.
If THAT was to happen, I would scoop him up in my arms and check to see if he was our Sylvester.
He was 23 years old when he died in my eldest son’s arms and I still miss him every damn day since he left.
Sylvester came to us in a very sneaky way. It was show and tell day in grade one and a little girl in my son’s class brought a box full of kittens! (well-played, Mom *wink*)
Soon, the neighbourhood was full of black cats running around and he was but one of many for about five years.
From the start, he was the best cat ever. Chill. Low-maintenance. Independent.
He shared his home for the first few years with a very bitchy spaniel, so he learned to amuse himself in high places and outdoors.
God, how he loved to roam. A true tom-cat if there ever was one. Gifts of bunnies and birds on my back step for years; symbols of his love for us.
Dragging his sorry butt home at 6 in the morning, ears torn from some fight in the night…remorseful looking to a degree, but also with a male swagger about him. One can only imagine how many lil Sylvesters roaming the city due to his midnight interludes.
He lived in five homes with us over his lifetime and grew up with my boys.
According to his Facebook page ( yes- he had Facebook) he enjoyed slow jazz, Nirvana and Bob Marley, as well as the occasional second hand puff of the herbal variety.
At the end, he was demented, and had cataracts, and also arthritis in his hips. The vet suggested watching to see if he seemed in pain, and if so, to bring him in, but he never showed pain. Just a slowing down phase. A following me everywhere phase, sniffing, hoping for a bite of cheese or maybe some meat. Some yowling randomly, where I would say ” Oh, Vesters, you bugger, you don’t even know any more what you are yowling for, do you, old guy?”
The saddest day for me was the day he yowled to be let out the patio door and as I stood there after opening it, he just lifted his head up a bit to the sun, but didn’t move a step towards outside.
He turned around and followed me back to the chair, where he lay on my legs in the sun, instead. He was a smart guy and knew his days of roaming were over. He could no longer defend himself in the great outdoors.
The day he died, both sons spent hours with him…petting him, talking to him, holding him, and loving him. He was loved so much by those boys; another brother of sorts.
He had heard all their secrets, and their tears had fallen on his fur many a time, in the quiet of their rooms.
He was wise and all knowing.
He knew all our secrets.
He knew where the bodies were buried and who broke the lamp.
He was a king among kings and a majestic proud beast and also a bit of a cad with the ladies, or so I assume.
I sure hope wherever he is, that there is sunshine and warm summer days, squirrels and birds and bunnies to chase, and a warm lap and a hunk of cheese whenever he has a craving for it.