Nutmeg, our oldest cat, queen of our house, died last night in her sleep. She was almost 21 years old and had seen and passed judgement on many things.
One of the first things Jennie and I did together was adopt this pair of rambunctious siblings, Nutmeg and Chance, to join our small hungry cocker spaniel Brandie. They came home in a cardboard box striking the lid with excitement like tiny sharks.
Chance was sweet and Nutmeg was confident. She would fetch crumpled paper balls that we threw; not with the throw it, throw it now! intensity of a dog, but with a sleek grace. She would pad back to us and return the missing prey.
In later years, fetching involved selecting random things from a far corner of the house (a sock, a toy, a slipper) and bringing them to the top of the stairs or the hallway. Why these things? Oh human, it is not for you to know such things.
I see echoes of Nutmeg and Chance in our two new adoptee cats. Waffles, male, black, clueless, prone to fits where he NEEDS love and your human touch. He will get that touch; you can not stop him. Moonstar: the huntress, aloof, aware and graceful.
A link to our past is broken; all the pets of our early years have lived, loved, and passed on.