I consider myself a glass half-full kind of person but, 2008 is turning out to be a pretty bad year for the Hill pets. We've gone through no less than 4 hamsters and have now lost our great cat, Max.
About two years ago, Tee and I were driving home from school and we saw something rolling under a truck. As the truck kept driving, we saw a little black cat run out and into the grass on the side of the road. Some crazy instinct took over and I pulled off to see if the little guy was o.k. He was without a scratch but starving and definitely ready for a family. Our family, sniff, sniff.
Tee kept saying "Mom, we can keep him? But, I thought you were allergic?".
It was maybe a slight exaggeration I had told my children each time they had asked for a kitten. For the record, they also think I'm allergic to snakes, skateboards, and tackle football, and I'd appreciate you having my back on those. This wee one, however, had survived being run over by a truck and amazingly, cured my allergies. A real-life kitty miracle!
Max was a hit from the start and everyone was in love. Especially Max, with Trey. Max loved my husband with a love that sometimes even bordered on creepy. No matter who wanted to pet him, he would crawl up on Trey's chest and purr like he was in his little cat heaven. "Purrr. I love you, man." Even Trey was moved. Usually to another chair to get away from Max, the love cat.
He grew into the troubled teenager we pray we'll never have in our children. He'd go out just before we were off to bed and would come home as I was going walking in the morning. He'd arrive war-torn with scratches and cuts from apparent cat-gang fights then would want to eat and snuggle and sleep all day. We got really worried when he started wearing a little blue bandana and got a "Crips" tattoo. He was trouble with a capital M but we loved that cat.
About 4:15 Friday morning, Fern started barking like crazy so Trey ran downstairs to see what was going on. He looked out the window and saw a pitbull with Max in his jaws. He ran off with Max before we could get the alarm off and door opened. A neighbor, John, found the little guy's body the next day.
John was really upset because he's lost two cats lately as well and the pitbulls are owned by someone who also lives in the neighborhood. He's been unable to get in touch with the owners of the dog so far and wants us to help him. I will make a stereotypical comment now that may or may not apply in this case but it's my blog so I'm taking the liberty:
People who own cats and love them and people who own pitbulls and leave them chained up in their backyards typically have very different personalities so it should make for some interesting conversations at the next homeowners association meeting.
Meanwhile, Sadie, in mourning, has said we need to get a microphone. For Max.
Through tears, "But, baby, Max doesn't need a microphone. He can't *sniff* sing anymore."
"No, momma, so we can sing songs about Max...can it be a pink Barbie one?"
I love that - taking a tragedy and turning it into a chance to get a toy.