Last weekend Linda and I attended a wake, for a kitty cat.
This might sound somewhat out of the ordinary but it wasn’t the first funeral that we’ve been to for a creature with more than two legs. Over the past few years we’ve held more than a couple of memorial services for bunny rabbits that managed to be in the wrong place at the wrong time and ended up, literally, on or near our property. We have a bunny burial ground a couple of blocks from our house. It’s on a hillside and has a nice view of the sun setting behind the mountains.
During the drive to Ventura for the wake Linda and I were discussing how many people just don’t get how devastating it is when you lose a pet. Sometimes you’ll hear them say something like, “It’s not like it was a person.” Paaaaaleez. There are a number of persons that I could do without.
I told her, again, about how I lost a kitty named “Saturn,” (don’t ask) back in 1979. That puddy loved me like no thing or no one before or since ever has and the feeling was mutual. I still haven’t gotten over her 30 years later. Then there was “Spike.” A big, fat, orange tabby that lived with me for about 9 years before a coyote got him back around 1990. I still think of him. He loved broccoli.
Jean Claude, the kitty whose wake we attended, left this world last week and took with him the broken heart of our dear friend Alexis who had the privilege of watching over him during his stay on Earth. He lived nearly 19 years. He was jet black and very lovable.
Claude was known for many things but one of his characteristic traits was his bullwhip of a tail. You needed to be wary when walking past him or he might cut your legs clean off at the knees. He could wake you from a dead sleep slapping that tail on the floor and he would flog you with it when you pet his back sometimes leaving welts that hurt but healed soon enough.
Claude loved the sun and just hanging in the garden. He liked salmon and stretching out across in the bed.
He also enjoyed a good Cuban cigar and a single malt scotch while sitting poolside with the New York Times. He liked the music of Cat Power and was a fan of Pink Panther movies.
All this past week I’ve been watching the moon. The moon is my planet and I like watching its mood change from month to month and year to year. But for the past 10 days or so the moon has been particularly beautiful.
Last week I rushed home so I could try to get a photograph of the moon juxtaposed with Venus. They were so close they seemed to be holding hands as they dipped below the horizon in the west.
Watching them through the viewfinder in the darkening sky I could have sworn I saw the silhouettes of Saturn and Spikey chasing each other around the moon and Venus. I often see them, up there, dancing with the stars, but this time there was a third kitty silhouette, his tail whipping up little clouds of stardust.