You only get one Chance

You only get one Chance

I could not write a better ode than Buds, so I will simply repost his Facebook status from this morning, July 29, 2012.

On a Friday the 13th, seventeen years ago, we adopted a black cat and his sister. We named him Chance. He wasn’t calm and patient as a kitten. At night, our feet were a tempting target and the best time to attack was 3 am. But Chance grew into a quiet and kind fellow. Sure, his sister needed the occasional knock on the head and he liked to yodel at night. But he preferred to spend his days in Virginia at the window watching for birds. In youth, he would sometimes chatter at them too, a quick chirping with mouth open to the excitement of prey.

His patience was legendary. Chip could lick and chew Chance’s ears and the whole time Chance’s attitude was of bemused approval. In age, personality narrows and mellows and then his tolerance of the world was extreme. Just let me watch the squirrels and wait here at this window dreaming.

The last week found his strength gone and the pounds melted away. Dehydration, failing kidneys, certainly some cancer, all stole strength. Now he has found the end eternal where the squirrels play outside the window everyday and sun warms the asphalt where he can loll contentedly. Take time this week to exhibit his cardinal virtue. Sit and watch the world, wait a beat before tempers flare and be calm.

Among my favorite memories will always be how you would be working on the computer or reading a book, and suddenly you would realize there was a purring cat sitting snuggled in on your lap. He would kneed you a little, then settle in to sleep with the contented, heavy-lidded look that only a happy cat can wear.

Sweet, patient, wonderful, loving black cat, you will be very, very much missed.