Saturday, January 24, 2009

Miss Madeline

Maddy Cat regrets her haste in trading the warmth of her humans' house for the freedom of the outdoors.

I have to admit, we have had prettier cats and smarter cats and funnier cats through the years, but Maddy is just the steadiest good girl. She's not a lap-sitter or cuddler but prefers to sit on my desk and watch my face while I work (between naps [hers not mine]). She purrs quite a bit but has has this irritated-seeming voice when she chooses to use it. Well, most cat noises are irritating, but her voice sounds like she's just HAD it with you and can't you please pay attention.

Mike doesn't like names for cats and can't bring himself to say things like Madeline or Celia or Stella, so she is usually called Mississippi Cat since we got her in Meridian or Baby Cat because she never seems to get very big. Emily and I in some sort of weak moment went to the animal shelter in Meridian 8 years ago and were determined to come home with kittens. I'm still not sure why because she had just talked me into getting 2 lab puppies, and I wouldn't have thought kittens were a priority (or very safe) at that time. Emily was just staying with us while she applied for jobs after graduating from UNC, so I can't remember the circumstances of wanting to fill our house and yard with animals except it was kind of fun at the moment. Anyway, we got Maddy and her sister Celia, although I don't think they were in any way related. Celia was a calico, long and graceful, with a very cheerful disposition. Maddy was homely, chunky, and a little aloof. Celia disappeared once we moved to Greensboro, but Maddy has been there with us through 2 more moves, the passing of the 2 elder cats, and the addition of her worst nightmare, Stella, and worse, a DOG.

I can count on Maddy Cat to be sitting on my bedside table every morning, just watching me and purring. She expects the alarm to ring at 7:00, and on the mornings it doesn't, she walks over and politely asks me if it's not time to get up. She's pretty patient, but after a period of time known only to her, she starts walking on me or tipping the edge of the lamp, the latter of which every cat of mine has learned will get me moving.

Maddy doesn't eat people food; has never shown the least interest in it. In fact, if you offer her chicken or cheese or anything else, she will make an elaborate show of pretending to bury it while giving you a disgusted look. Until we moved here, she would only eat dry food, but somehow she developed a taste for Fancy Feast that our older cat Lili liked, so now she wails for a spoon of that a couple of times a day. It's the least I can do for my work buddy.

She's trying to figure out how to take walks with Darby and me. Sometimes, I'll turn around a few blocks from home, and I'll see her trotting along the sidewalk with her little bow-legged walk yelling her head off. I've tried carrying her, but she won't put up with that long. She usually just runs along the edges of houses until she gets scared by something or tired and then goes back home. She'll be there when Darby and I get home reprimanding us and welcoming us back home.

I thought she deserved an entry all her own because she's kind of an in-the-background kind of cat. If you take 20 pictures of her, they all look the same. She never seems to do anything mischievous or funny, but she does have her own personality. She's a cat to be counted on, always the same, never climbing the walls or clawing things, but just there for me.

1 comment:

  1. Baby Cat is the correct name.