Friday, February 10, 2006

Warning: sentimental cat post. Feel free to ignore.

I didn't used to have this problem, because my kitty would read my books for me.

I had to leave my Miez behind when I moved to Australia. Locking her away in quarantine for six months would not have been fair to her or me.

Of course, I never would have chosen to get a cat in Germany or Denmark, much as I longed for one. I knew I wasn't likely to be there forever. Miez was the result of spur-of-the-moment bad judgment of a flatmate of mine, who thought she wanted a cute little pet and then wasn't all that interested after the novelty wore off. The following year, said flatmate up and went to Berlin, leaving the cat behind. But by then I had been Miez's human for a long time anyway.

I was the one who taught her about the big, wide world. Her formative kitten-years had been spent as that truly German phenomon: the "house cat". She had never been allowed outside until she came to live with me. So I sat in the garden with Miez on my lap every day for nearly two weeks, until she finally stopped trembling and burying her head in my skirt for long enough to go exploring. (Make the big blue ceiling go away!) The first few days after that she would slowly creep a few metres from me, then flatten herself to the ground and yowl until I went to pick her up. She eventually got more confident, but it was a long time before she stopped ducking whenever a bird flew overhead.

Finally, though, Miez discovered what the outdoors was really for and started to bring home mice and birds. We had words about that. Especially after I came back after a two week trip away (a neighbour had been feeding her) to find a rotting, maggot-ridden pigeon in my bed.

But, you know, even thinking of that incident I feel nostalgic. I know she went to a good home. I knew the people -- I'd checked out the house and the area. But still I miss her. Every day. And when I came across this photo again today, I had myself a little sniffle.

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New Kid on the Hallway said...

What a beautiful cat! I'd be lost without mine - so sorry you had to find her a new home. (The cats are one of the reasons why living in England, while possible and suitable for me for a number of reasons, has never really been a serious possibility!)

Improbulus said...

Couldn't find your email address on your blog, thought I'd let you know that I've just replied to your question re. categories.

StyleyGeek said...

Yes, it wasn't a decision that was easy to make, New Kid. Unfortunately, Geekman had only been on a series of short-term postdoc positions and eventually there were no more possibilities over there. He applied for jobs in lots of places, but the Australian one was the only offer he got (in time). Turned out later that one in Canada wanted him too, but they took a year to decide! The hard life of an academic :S