Life in the Slow Lane

Life in the Slow Lane

Sunday, March 13, 2005

The Story of Y

I often get asked to re-tell the story of how I got Yoshi. It is not a tale of adventure or peril. It is just kinda sweet. Most are, I believe. Whether you got your furchild on a whim, by chance or with much planning the moment of connection is always story-worthy. Everybody could put a spin the encounter to make a grown man cry.

About 7 years ago I was living in the basement of my parent’s house. I was very depressed over a looooong bout of bad stomach problems and was virtually housebound. My dad, who can pull of a curmudgeon act quite well, caved in to Mom-Pressure and I got a cat for my birthday. We’d had a cat in my childhood who was very sweet but very destructive and my dad was not keen to repeat that. So up until my birthday there were no cats allowed in the house.

Now when I say I got a cat as a gift it was actually a cat-coupon, as I had to track down one of my own choosing. I knew I wanted a Siamese as the destructive cat from the past, Tiko, was of that breed and despite eating all sorts of clothing and promptly barfing it all up again he was a really great cat. I figure you either love the Siamese breed or are deathly afraid of them. I love them and all their quirky shit. These cats are nuts.

I am a loyal supporter of the SPCA and tried without any luck for months to get a Siamese cat through them. It was a difficult decision for me to go to a breeder but I think if you are set on a particular breed then finding a reputable breeder is the way to go. But I was having a hard time with that too. There just weren’t too many Siamese cats that year. I would call a breeder and they wouldn’t have any. My timing sucked. I’d have to wait a year. I finally found a lady waaaay out in the suburbs who had some pure bred lilac point Siamese. She said she was a new breeder and this was her first litter. I realize now that she wasn’t a true breeder as none of the kittens were registered even though the parent cats were. But the kittens were vet checked and I was able to view the parent cats. And I was PINING for a kitten! So my mom and I got in the car and found the place after getting lost a million times.

We parked in the apartment complex and I was feeling really bad. My tum was killing me and I felt super nauseous. I asked my mom to just go in and pick a cat she liked and I would be fine with it. I just wanted to hide in the car. So my mom went in and explained my situation to the Nice Lady. She came out to the car, much to my initial embarrassment, and encouraged me to come in saying that she didn’t mind if I hurled all over her house. So I staggered in and as I was walking down the hall a little cat face peeked out from around the corner. Instant MELT! Gut wrenching sweetness! My nausea was forgotten. I sat on the living room floor and watched these kittens play with each other as only kittens can play. Freak out! I think there were 5 altogether and I couldn’t make up my mind. The mother cat was a Traditional Siamese with a round face and the father was an Extreme Siamese meaning he looked like he was formed in a wind tunnel. Very pointy face! One kitten was like Papa, 3 were like Mama and one was in between. My mom was rooting for the Papa look-a-like because he was very cross eyed and hilarious looking but he totally ignored my ass as only a Siamese can. I had this idea in my mind that somehow one of the kittens would make a grand gesture or something that would indicate to me that it was THE ONE! But none did. They all just played with each other like I didn’t exist. My mom started getting impatient telling me to pick ALREADY as I had been sitting there for a while but the Nice Lady told me to take my time. So just when I was thinking that none of those Movies Of The Week were realistic and that The Universe would not Show Me The Way one of the kittens finally detached itself from the melee and walked over to me. I was sitting cross-legged and that kitten just climbed up onto my knee and looked me right in the face with these violet Elizabeth Taylor eyes. That was The ONE! And it was the one with the in-between face.

It had a mark on its nose that the Nice Lady swore wasn’t there that morning but I didn’t care. We tried to figure out the gender of this kitty and decided it was a boy. So Yoshi was put in a box (like she stayed there for long!) and taken home. At a later vet visit it was determined that he was a she and only had little fur tufties instead of balls. So that is why she is named Yoshi meaning ‘Favourite Son’. She would have been called Diva had we immediately known her true calling. And that would have been a very appropriate name too.

Once we got her home and discovered that the horrible scar on her nose was, in fact, dried food Yoshi proceeded to follow me around constantly, earning a nickname of The Shadow. The story goes that the momma cat gave birth to Yoshi and her siblings under the covers at the foot of the bed and from the very beginning Yoshi slept under the covers too. Kittens have to be fed small meals more often and every morning at 5 am Yoshi would wake me up by sitting next to my head and gently poking my face. I would ask her if she was hungry and her stomach would audibly grumble in reply. I am not kidding! It was loud.

So that is the story of how Yoshi picked me. She doesn’t like other people and won’t let them pet her. Only my parents and I can do that. That is just the way she is. But everybody still loves her anyway. Actually, she really doesn’t deserve it but that is the power of her charm. She looks at me with total understanding when I talk to her and can comprehend quite a few words and phrases. I swear!

Here are some things she totally understands-

-Jumpjump - She will jump on my lap.
-Are you hungry? Do you want some din dins? – I know this makes me sound like an ass but her resulting excitement is worth it.
-Cozy and Toasty – She will climb under the covers for bed.
-Crunchies - Means her dry food.
-Have you been a good girl? (Perked ears and total anticipation) Do you want some TUNA? -Insane meowing and other cute noises
-No biting -Only kisses! - She will immediately stop biting and lick your hand.
-Come give your mama some lovin’! - She will come and stand on my chest and smooch my face.

Ok, how cute is that? This cat makes me laugh everyday. That is the important part. And yes, I talk to her in a funny voice! So call me weird, batty, freaky and pathetic but I LOVE MY CAT! When she is sleeping and I put my hand on her fur she immediately starts purring. I would do anything for her.

1 comment:

Laurel said...

Von Krankipantzen, there is just nothing like Siamese love! You've got that right about them being nuts, but if you've loved one, how could you even think of another breed?

Satu the Catu sends her very gentlest, most healing purrings to you, and gives you noggin. Love and stinky fish to Yoshi.

LB