We never intended to have gray & white cats. Seriously. My spouse is fond of black cats, and I had no real preference. A few years ago, however, we found ourselves in possession of THREE identically decorated beasts.
Three? Yes, well, we never intended to have 3 cats, either. Before we embarked on parenthood, I offered my spouse a deal: we could have a child, or we could have a third cat. But not both.
Our daughter is now 16.
However, what I didn’t factor in my ultimatum were the child’s wishes. Funny how that happens. When Lilly-Karin was in elementary school, she decided that since Mom & Dad each had a cat, she needed one. After some discussion, I capitulated. However, I said we couldn’t get a gray and white one.
Our last two acquisitions (from two different shelters) were that color. Enough, I thought. What are the odds?
Well, Mr. Lukas came along. He was found by some construction workers and brought to the Oakland shelter. He was a mere wisp of a feline. A tiny ball of gray and white fur. Ha! We fell in love.
Little did we know, he was Maine Coon, or possibly a MC and Norwegian Forest Cat mix. In any event, he turned out to be HUGE. So we found ourselves with three.
It caused some confusion among the neighbors, who could never really tell just how many cats we add. There was always one prowling the street, or sunbathing in the yard, or running up to greet us.
Our middle cat, Ratrani, died in early 2017. Mr. Lukas passed away just after Christmas, leaving us with our matriarch, Elin.
Well, that wasn’t sufficient. So by and by we found ourselves with new kittens, Decaf (AKA the Panther) and Cheerios. Back to three. At least this time, we thought, they were distinctive.
Elin never really connected with the kittens. They were too fast, too feral, and didn’t respect her rights to the couch (and laps) of the humans. Still, she kept her dignity and insisted on directing the house, especially around meal times.
This past Thursday, Elin ate breakfast, crawled under my desk, and refused to leave my side for several hours. Around noon, I found her in the kitchen, panting (never a good sign with cats). A quick trip to the ER confirmed that her heart was failing. She passed away soon thereafter, closing the door on our gray and white chapter.
I’m sure in some other realm Elin, Ratrani, and Mr. Lukas are sharing a couch, as long as the sun is warm and the humans are nearby.