I want to mark here, the death of my cat Lucy at 16 years of age.
I was still at university when I went to the South Hobart Cats Home with my flatmates to pick out a kitten.
I wanted a boy because they were cheaper to desex than girls, but this little thing just kept on jumping onto us and Margaret said we had to take her and that she would pay the extra amount (Note to young cat buyers; if you are baulking at paying an extra $20, then it could be a hint that you actually cannot afford a pet… veterinary care is expensive, special ‘old age’ cat food is expensive, boarding catteries are expensive…)
She had a long and interesting life with a lot of travel mostly back and forwards between Tasmania and Victoria when Chris and I lived apart. Maybe I shouldn’t tell you about the time I decided she needed a toilet break in the centre of Melbourne… this was pre-Citylink and we were driving from the airport to Traralgon. She was miowing constantly and I figured that she was busting. But I was prepared! I had a piece of string or rope to attach to her collar and she was meant to meekly go off and do a pee and then jump back into the car to continue our journey like a good little
dog ah, Cat. Of course she went wild and immediately slipped her collar (which was elasticised for just this sort of situation) and she ran off. We were in the median strip on Victoria Parade (or Royal parade I can’t remember). I thought she was lost forever, but we found her huddling under a car that was parked on the side of the road. It’s a wonder she survived so long with such a silly owner as me!
She also spent four years living with our friends Wendy and Kim; they were kind enough to take her when we moved to the Northern Territory and returned her too us (air freight!) when they moved to Western Australia.
She was a tiny, pretty and sweet natured cat. She was determined to sleep on me every single night and she would become very displeased if we were late getting the children to bed, the evenings were supposed to be all hers! Ada was particularly enthusiastic about Lucy and she acted as her official doorman – opening and closing the sliding door at Lucy’s whim. She would run around after Lucy saying ‘ucy, ‘ucy, ‘ucy! ( ‘ucy bye bye… forever now darlin’)
Lucy had an extremely annoying habit of miowing at the top of her lungs just after I had dropped off to sleep and this did become an issue during the time that I was breastfeeding Ada three times a night… ever since then her miows set me on edge and I was pretty bad tempered about it. Sorry about that Lucy.
I had hoped that she would just die in her sleep one day and I would never have to make the hard decision. Unfortunately an encounter with a dog on Saturday, her old age, her bad heart murmur… it was all just too much and we had to let her go. I missed her last night; no cat to sleep on my back, bum or legs like a log all night long. Farewell Lucille xxx