Speaking Of Cats

by Anniel9/15/17
I am definitely not a die-hard cat lover, although we have occasionally had one left with us, and I have learned to like them. Cate, our youngest daughter, has needed a cat to love because of her illness and enforced isolation. Bear and I have inherited her first cat, Eeva Kissa, Eeva being a Finnish female name, and Kissa the Finnish word for “Cat.”

Cate got Eeva in Alaska, then took her to Boston with her while she was still able to attend college at North Eastern University. When Cate’s health became too unstable and she fell and broke both arms, Bear flew to Boston and drove both Cate and the cat to Chicago so Cate could live near her neurosurgeon.

The cat was a survival tool for our daughter, but Eeva had real problems with small apartment living when her mistress was hospitalized and her food and water were left out for her. Friends of Cate’s would drop by and fill up the cat’s dishes every few days, but they didn’t stay long. Eeva became terribly fat and destructive, so Bear and I finally brought her home to Alaska.

Flying with an animal is an interesting experience, and often hard on both the animal, the wallet AND the people. “People” meaning those doing the transporting AND their seat mates.

At any rate, when she got here, Eeva was able to run freely and be fed on a regular schedule. She lost weight and became a different happy cat.

In the meantime Cate was lonely beyond belief. She finally moved into a larger apartment, and adopted a very peculiar neutered male cat, named Ember. Twice she has brought him home to Alaska with her. He and Eeva have been friendly enemies during his time here, and on his first visit I never heard him speak.

A few months ago Cate brought Ember and stayed for several weeks. A couple of times I thought I heard him make noises that sounded like he was trying to say something to us, but I brushed it off.

A few days before Cate left, she and Bear left me at home with only the cats, who apparently didn’t know I was here. I was knitting at the far end of the living room, away from the eleven stairs coming up. A couch is turned lengthwise about five feet away from the stairs. I heard Ember at the bottom of those stairs, and he said, “Hello?”

I was shocked, stopped knitting, and remained silent. He then stopped at every step on the way up and said, “Hello?” Complete with question mark. He had spoken twelve times when he reached the top of the stairs. Then he turned into the living room and continued saying, “Hello?” about four more times in a questioning manner until he cleared the edge of the couch and saw me.

He would not say it again when I tried to figure out a way to keep him going. And of course when Bear and Cate got home and I told them about Ember, they looked at me like I was hallucinating.

Well, Cate went back into the hospital about ten days ago, and her eldest brother went to Chicago to help her when she got out. He called yesterday to tell me that he was sound asleep on the futon in the living room when about 4 A.M. the cat decided he needed to be fed and began fussing. My son was about ready to throw his slipper at Ember when he heard the cat give a loud exasperated sigh. He then walked to Cate’s closed bedroom door, put his front paws up on the door, and very loudly yelled, “HELLO-O-O!” And repeated yelling until he got fed.

Ember’s vocabulary may be limited, but I feel so vindicated. Now if I knew how to increase his speaking ability maybe he could drown out the political nonsense stalking the land. I’ll have to make certain he stays Conservative. • (74 views)

Share
This entry was posted in Essays. Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to Speaking Of Cats

  1. Timothy Lane says:

    Our family has had a dog as well as numerous cats, which are very convenient. I had a cat named Gregory, and after he died, I had Francesca. After she died, along with the cats Elizabeth had brought to our house (Dickon, Two-Tone, and Malkin), we got a pair of cats named Shadow and Neville. But someone stole Shadow, and a few months later Neville died (a lot of his exercise came from playing with Shadow, which I think had a lot to do with this). We never got around to replacing them, and probably couldn’t now.

  2. Gibblet says:

    We had a Jack Russell Terror that would sometimes say “Out” when it needed to go outside. It sounds like Cate’s cat had some attitude to go along with its vocalizations.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *