No one’s ever lost forever
When they die they go away
But they will visit you occasionally
Do not be afraid
No one’s ever lost forever
They are caught inside your heart
If you garden them and water them
They make you what you are.
~Amanda Palmer, Lost
May 1st: a holiday in Europe, and birthday of Carmel, who opened our family to cats, also that of Eleanore, my mother’s high school friend whom I now have the pleasure to know. And the day Little Peg Flint was called home to glory, leaving a hole in my heart bigger than the one she left on the face of this earth. She is, of course, on my mind today. It’s an Ohio-feeling sort of day out there, too, grey and close, warm and thinking about rain.
It feels like summer dinner-times when the rain would finally pull it together enough to start throwing down in fat splashy drops and thrashing torrents. We’d all leap up from the table and run to close the windows, especially on the north side of the house, the boring side yard we never used where there was no porch nor awnings. I suppose it was memorable because at no other time did anyone ever leap up from the table without ceremony. I remember attempting it once on a summer evening when I’d left friends playing in the street. It wasn’t often I had friends on the street, so I was afraid of being left out. But I wasn’t leaving that table until I’d eaten properly and asked to be excused. Not a hardship, but in such a regimented home, everyone flying around the house in the middle of dinner closing windows was very exciting.
Mom would be tickled with how I’m spending this May Day. To begin with, she would love the idea of CatCamp. To trade kitty-sitting with friends is fairly mundane, and quite necessary in this community where people travel as though their sanity depends upon it. Oh wait, it does. But I like to make a big deal about it. Kiwi has her Black Cat Fan Club, whom we try to lavish with Kiwi swag for having her visit, hoping to maintain her welcome despite being a shouty little pill some days. And cats who come to stay here are registered campers at CatCamp. Frequent photo updates are sent to their parents, especially of activities not allowed at home ~ kitties on the dining room table, for example. It’s all fun & games at CatCamp! (Yes, the man is frequently away when CC is in session. Why do you ask?) Eating schedules are out the window because Kiwi is accustomed to eating 6 times a day. But we maintain overall portion control for good health, of course.
This session’s campers are the 3 little morsels rescued last summer by a friend. They are no longer little nor morsels. They are awesome, magnificent beasts, straight off the Savannah, prowling the flat for unsuspecting squeaky toys and the vulnerable Kickaroo. And each other. Kiwi was afraid of them when they were small, fast, and unpredictable. Now she’s just being rude. But they are helping her get over her fear-bullying. They are serious cuddlers. I have faith that 5 days will be more than enough to coax my little grumbly bear into a big purring pile of pelts. Yes, the man is on a 5 day biking tour… with the Purricane’s parents.
So, surrounded by cats and flat Ohio skies, I remember my Mamasan and wish ~again and always~ that she was here sharing it with me.