To Play Another Day is LIVE!!


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Now available at the Kindle Bookstore with much love and gratitude in memoriam for my dearest editor and friend Elizabeth Roberts. For an excerpt click on “Rocketing To My Grave”. up there in the menu bar.


Meow Meow The Great

Meow-Meow came out of a box in a parking lot near the shores of Gray’s Harbor Washington. The lady holding the box said that she’d had her shots and was of Siamese and Calico descent. Pastel Calico at that. We didn’t know about the other part yet.
She had this cute little pinkish patch on one side and a smudge a smidge darker, and larger, over her back. Her not-quite-black tipped tail looked as if she’d gotten too close to a campfire. Of the four choice kittens in the bunch it was agreed that she was the most adorable.
The lady had said that the litter was weened and had suffered their kitten shots and but for a weepy little squint in her left eye she was perfect. She came home with us. She complained the whole fifteen minutes in the car ride home.
Meow-Meow enjoyed her first birthday in soggy Aberdeen, a harbor town that literally floats on the engineered tidal sands built up way back when. There she had seen her first snow. I had fashioned a small platform in an east window for her to languish in the sun; On those rare occasions when the sun actually burned through the harbor fog that is.
The lady of the house was just not happy with the atmospheric situation of the times. One chilly winter morning, outside the two picture windows in the living room, the snow was falling gently in wet gobs of wonder. At least it seemed to the cat. She didn’t much care for it on her paws though. The out-of-doors frightened her.
While I was at the mouth of the wood stove taking care of business, Fuzzy (her current pet name) was on her perch in the window sill swatting and pawing at the snowflakes falling just beyond her reach outside. She was adorable—I had to grab my camera. Now that she’s gone I’m extra glad for that camera.
As Meow-Meow grew into our lives the climate took it’s toll on the lady of the house. The times reminded me of that old saw “If mama ain’t happy, ain’t nobody happy.” The cat was almost a full year old when the decision came to escape the harbor’s gloom for cheerier skies down south. We celebrated her first birthday in sunny Arizona.
The Fur (one of several developing pet names) HATES road trips and she made the point very, very adamantly. She was quite satisfied to be anywhere but on the road. That was no surprise, but we were in for a few there in Arizona.
It turns out that Meow-Meow wasn’t such a chicken after all. In Sun City we had wild wabbits. Lot’s and lots of wabbits too. I enjoyed the quiet early morning hours watching her watching outside the sliding glass door to the patio as the sun rose: Her eyes darting and tail tip flicking excitedly, just wanting to play with whatever that was out there.
Our area was on the outskirts of town along the “New River” bed—coyote country. We weren’t keen on letting her out and the Home Owners Association weren’t either. Meow-Meow had a different view on the subject however.
The lady of the house wasn’t as light on her feet as the cat and there were two exterior doors between the living area and the laundry room. It didn’t take long for Fur-Fur (who is neither the “lady of the house” nor I) to figure this one out.
Once the seal was broken I never could fix it. She devised strategies involving hideouts and deceptions that I thought much too tactically sound for an ordinary cat. It’s one thing to be a sly and crafty predator. Watching her develop tactics and strategies to defeat the hand that feeds became laughable.
There was more to her. Like for instance—she sometimes would just not shut up. Some say Siamese are a little mouthy by nature and I had come to think that perhaps her Calico part was also half Siamese. Now that she was a year old, her pink spot had developed an orange spot in it, and the dark spots on her side and tail were getting darker. She was really a good looking cat: everyone said so.
Meow-Meow never quit loving to run around under the bed-covers, hide under anything that wasn’t nailed down, or crawl into a box, a bag, or a bucket. The only thing she liked better was escaping to the great outdoors. I wasn’t happy about that and neither was the lady of the house.
The first time The Fuzz didn’t come home after escaping we agreed that she was probably in process of becoming coyote dung. Their baying often came from a nearby golf course and the wild dogs had been reported to move around among the unfenced yards.
Well lo-and-behold the next morning I found her on the roof. That critter was a fine example of feline fur. She was quick and she was strong. She made up for her diminutive stature with the weight of her wits.
After a couple of complaints from the old codgers in the area it was deemed improper for Meow-Meow to go outside. She had started using a neighbor’s horseshoe pits as a litter box. She didn’t get the memo. We offered to clean the pits twice a week but unfortunately it turned out to be unnecessary.
Like the unsinkable Molly Brown, she floated to and fro as she saw fit; and if you don’t like it try to catch me – Ha! Her time in Arizona wasn’t to be long. The lady of the house was beginning to come out of a funk that began a couple of years past. Her husband died then her mother passed on shortly after.
I had seen her to Aberdeen and made repairs to the home and grounds. Meow-Meow and I had seen her to Arizona and made repairs to the home and grounds. It was time to move on so the lady of the house could find her happiness.
Once again we found ourselves on the road. “Gattita” was her nom de retard for this evolution. Well, that is, along with all of the others. She didn’t seem to care what I called her. I could call her monkey and if she felt like coming over for a yank on the tail she would. If not….

The sunny north San Diego county foothills are where we set up house keeping when it was all said and done. A cat’s paradise–where it rarely rains and the summer time is hard to beat; anywhere in the world.
(End of Part 1)

Meow Meow The Great (pt 2)

What at first looked like paradise soon became a little less for the fuzz. My beloved kitty wasn’t keen on dogs and there were three BIG DOGS at our new digs.

My friend had invited me to stay with he and his wife while I got situated in our new village of Fallbrook, California. It’s quite an idyllic little place. I kind of snuck that cat in under the radar for the first week.

I had returned to Arizona to pick up a load of my stuff and when I returned Meow Meow was missing. My room was tossed too. The mattress was sideways and the covers where all askew. It didn’t look good.

That dang cat went missing for a week and I thought sure she was a goner.

One morning I went out and called to her and danged if she didn’t magically appear a hundred feet down the road at the dead end. She was skittish and it took me a few minutes to get my hands on her.

My Lord she was a mess! She had mud all over and stunk to high heaven. It seemed she had been hiding out in a small culvert that emptied into the barranca (geological drainage) behind the property.

When I headed to the house Kitty Cat wasn’t to happy. It was a struggle getting her past the dogs. I had to carry her by the scruff of the neck so as not to get clawed. Meow-Meow wouldn’t go out of her window for a long time.

The very last time she went missing she was gone about three weeks. I decided to check the neighborhood to the west. The street was blocked by a neighbor’s fence so I drove about a mile to the street in question. Serendipity was on my side as I lucked into meeting a tenant at her mailbox.

When I explained that my pastel Calico kitty had gone missing the lady affirmed that she was staying here at her neighbor’s home. I knocked on the door: no answer.

I returned the next day, later in the day, and met the folks who took her in. The man of the house was taken by that little shit and it looked like she liked it there. There were no dogs present.

Meow-Meow came out of the house and into the garage via the big garage door. She came to me and let me pick her up and pet her…for a moment anyway and then she wanted down.

I let her down and she proceeded to walk over to the food and water dishes to give them a sniff and looked up at me. Then she strolled over to her litter box and did the same motions. The icing on the cake was when she walked back over to me standing just inside the garage door.

She plopped down right next to the line where the inside edge of the door came down and with tail wagging took a look at me and then generally surveyed the scene. It was clear that she was calling this home now.

I told her new family that I would bring the Kitty kennel, food and water bowls, brush, and whatever else was for her. I did so the next day and as I walked away some tears formed and trickled down my cheek making it hard to thank the new owner for permission to visit from time to time.

The family moved miles away not to long after and I still think about that dang cat years later.