Sunday, June 15, 2008

Serendipity ... (part four) ...

First and foremost, you should know that I am a cat lover. I first began this series on February 28th (this year), concluding on the 29th , the very next day.

What has occurred that made me think of adding a 'part four'? Good question.

Earlier today I drove Joyce back to Hobby Airport. As I said in that post, she's a talker. I asked her about Joanne (her sister), of course, and she said that she was doing really well, actually. Well enough to complain about her physical therapist!

Then she went on to tell me how much she was enjoying taking Joanne's cat out for a walk. I asked, "What do you mean, 'taking' the cat out for a walk? Is it on a leash or something??"

[I have never 'taken a cat out for a walk'. Per the 3rd link in the introduction above (see the 6th paragraph once you get to the link), the only cat that I have EVER had who deigned to 'accompany' me on walks was Serendipity!]

And so I was really interested in hearing her answer. The answer was that there's some sort of cat carrier type of thingee (Don't you just love how accurately I am able to describe some of this stuff??) on wheels. When the 'cage door' is opened, said cat jumps in, anticipating a walk in the fresh air.

[This would never have worked with Serendipity, I can guarantee you!]

Joanne, of course, with her very recent knee replacement surgery, has not been able to take her cat out for 'walks'.

My mind immediately went wandering, as it often does, and I was reminded, once again, of the 'mentally retarded' cat that we had in Indiana. (See the 1st link in the above introduction, perhaps a little more than 1/4 of the way through, beginning with "I've had lots of cats" and ending with "Maybe he had no sniffer?")

Our very best friends at the time were Paul Joe and Jacky Kerker. Paul Joe was a farmer. (I say "was" because he passed away some years back.) They had two children, of whom I only taught the older, Krystal, who is herself now a teacher, but that's a story for another day (maybe).

They were the ones we relied on when Johnny (my brother) had his terrible accident and with whom we left our kitty if we were to be out of town for any length of time.

Paul Joe and Jacky's 'pets' were never considered as indoor critters. They were relegated to the outdoors, and if Paul Joe 'felt like' feeding them, they got fed. Otherwise, they would have to forage for themselves. We were understandably reluctant to leave our mentally retarded wonder, albeit much loved, in the care of such a person.

Both Paul Joe and Jacky, however, told us that we could rest-assured go on our canoe trip up to Superior/Quetico in Minnesota/Canada (dropping DD off at the University of Wisconsin at the Olympic speed-skating summer training camp along the way).

Well, we called along the way north (I don't remember where we were when we called) just to check and see how our 'baby' was doing. Jacky answered and then proceeded to hand the phone off to Paul Joe, who said (you absolutely MUST try and visualize a heavy, heavy Indiana farmer's accent here!), "Oh, yeah! He's doing great!"

[It was only after our return that we learned that, at the time of our call, Paul Joe actually had our kitty entrapped underneath a milk crate and was poking at it with a stick!)

Later ... quite a while, actually, after our return to Indiana ... we had Paul Joe and Jacky over. Our mentally retarded wonder took one look at Paul Joe sitting on the couch and immediately went over and bit him on his thumb!

We thought, "Whaaat!!" It was then that we learned of the milk crate entrapment. Also, Jacky disclosed to us at the same time, our kitty had chosen one of Paul Joe's boots to pee in!

Our baby might have been retarded, but he was selective!


Craig Peihopa said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Craig Peihopa said...

I love cats too Goldenrod. I especially love big cats! I have been fortunate to pat quite a few in my photographic role. I love reading your posts. It would be enhanced somewhat by an image or three. If I lived nearby, I would offer to do that for you as a gift. I will keep reading your posts.......

I deleted the last comment as my spelling was awry and if you have been a teacher, that simply won't do.

Goldenrod said...

I got quite a chuckle when both comments arrived via e-mail and quickly flipped over to my post to see if you'd delete the 1st one. Sure enough!

A very generous thought, Craig, of gifting a photograph or three. Thank you.

Have considered adding photographs many times. Every time I do, tho, my mind says, "Nuh uh, concentrate on the writing." And so, that's what I try to do. I will be adding a fairly recent pic of me having just a blast playing badminton in DD's backyard.

Tammy said...

Looking forward to seeing a photo!

Nancy said...

Why was he poking at the cat with a stick? I can picture a reason for trapping it under a crate, but poking it? That seems really unkind.

That story reminds me of a time when some very ill-behaved little cousins were at my parents house. The dog was outside in her pen and the children were told not to bother her. The boy, followed by his sisters, went outside, got a stick and poked it through the fence, hitting the dog right in the face. The little sisters told on him, so that's how my parents knew what happened. Later on, they brought the dog inside - I forget why - and she went right up to the boy and barked barked barked in his face. He was terrified. She wasn't hurting him, just scolding him. And he deserved it.

Goldenrod said...

Tammy, I don't know how soon it will be, but I promise to post it.

Nancy, Paul Joe would never have dared to actually harm our 'baby'. He had an almost blatant disregard for animals, in general (unless they were a means for providing income), but this particular animal was a guest in his home. No WAY would he have allowed the stick to actually touch our baby. He was teasing, only. Granted, it was unkind, and I think our baby repaid him more than generously by first peeing in his boot and then biting him on his thumb. BOTH responses earned and fully-justified.

By the way, if you're interested in learning just a bit more about Paul Joe and Jacky, there's a lot more info in my post titled, "Canoeing (part three)", published March 11th, and filed under "Memories".

Craig Peihopa said...

Goldenrod, even Tammy agrees. Don't procrastinate any further, please! Pretty please?! with a real cherry and not a marschino one!
too funny.

Nice story from Nancy. Animals know and respect people much more than we do them and it is nice to hear some stories when they can stand up for themselves. Good stories all round.

Craig Peihopa said...

perhaps that should have read Maraschino and not marschino - Back to School I go it would seem.