Until one has loved an animal, part of the soul remains unawakened

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Until one has loved an animal, part of the soul remains unawakened

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Saturday

Happy Halloween

Ninja says there is nothing to be afraid of on Halloween.
The black cats will protect you.














Bambi says, keep all your cats and kittens at home.











Spyder says, it's scary out there!

Friday

BLACK CATS ARE GOOD LUCK!

As a little girl, I remember, black cats depicted in story books were meant to be scary. But, the pictures of them with their arched backs, fluffy tails, midnight fur, and wild eyes fascinated me. I had never seen a cat like that. My own Tabby was mild, plain looking, and she never took on that arched back pose. By the time I was seven I thought I knew everything there was to know about cats until my best girlfriend's cat gave birth. There, among the calico and 3 tabbies was one little helpless coal black kitten. Suddenly I realized that black cats were just like all the other kittens. This little Blackie was soft and purring, kneading it's mama's belly, and mewing with milk on it's chin. Oh, how I wanted to adopt that kitty!

When Blackie came to live with us and grew up into a shiny blue-black velvet cat, I learned very quickly that some people were afraid of him, or said he was bad luck. I remembered the childhood storybook, but didn't understand how that story could make people feel that way about black cats. I was sad for these people that they didn't know how loving and special Blackie was. He had never brought me bad luck. He was good luck!!!

We had a special friendship Blackie and I. He was more than my cat. He was my friend. He knew all about my most secret things, because I told him, and I knew he always listened. Even if he was asleep, he flicked his ears to show me he was hearing what I said. Sometimes he would look deep into my eyes as if he wanted me to know that he would always be there for me. And if you can believe this, he gave me other special messages in my dreams.

If I overslept for school, he would appear in my dream running ahead of me to school. Then, I realized I was going to be late and I woke up. Another time I had spent the day ice skating at the local outdoor skating rink with my friends. It was very cold out, and most kids left early. I loved to skate so much, and even though it hurt to breathe in the cold air hurt, I stayed until the sun went down. Blackie was there at the driveway to greet me switching his tail back and forth as if scolding me. I was so tired when I got home I actually went to bed early and fell asleep. Unfortunately, I still felt like I was breathing in that brittle cold air. I had bad dreams that night. I was so sick with fever. Blackie ran to my mother jumping on her bed and pestered her until she followed him to my room.

It hurt to breathe and I was so sick my parents took me to the hospital. I had pneumonia. The whole time I was in the hospital Blackie walked back and forth between my room and the front door giving a mew each time he reached the door. When I came home he laid down on my bed with me and didn't get up unless I did. Not only did he save my life, but continued to care for me until I was well.

When I was a teenager, we moved to a farm twenty miles away from town. We began to worry about Blackie when we were unpacking boxes. He kept going to the door and meowing loudly and insistently. We tried to be careful Blackie wouldn't get out by keeping him in one room with the door closed until he was familiar with our new home. But, that night, he had found a loose screen, and before we knew it, he was gone! Next day, we hunted all over the farm, calling and calling. We told our new neighbors to watch out for a big black shiny cat with a yellow collar and tag. But no one had seen him. Some were surprised we had a black cat. I set them straight right away. It was good luck to have a black cat. I told them. Blackie had saved my life! Some people's attitudes changed hearing the story. Blackie was a good ambassador on behalf of all black cats because of that.

Sometimes you read unbelievable stories about animals finding their way back to their homes when they are lost. Those stories seemed so incredible to me. I don't know why Blackie left us. After about two weeks I dreamed he was back at our old house. I kept telling my parents that is where he was. They knew about our "dream connection". So, we drove back there, and there he was sitting on the front porch of our empty old house, looking pretty miserable. He was so glad to see us! I'm sure that is why he decided the farm was the best place to stay.

Sometimes Blackie would send me dreams of chasing down mice. Thanks a lot Blackie! Next morning there was his mousie gift left for me on the doorstep. I guess he figured if we dreamed of hunting together, I should get a part of the spoils. One time I had such a real dream, it was like I was there, like Blackie and I were one. It was a scary dream and I couldn't wake up. Blackie was being chased by a big dog. He ran so fast twisting and turning in every direction trying to get away. In the dream I was running with him fearful and stressed and scared. You know how in dreams you feel like you can hardly walk fast or run? Like you are trying to run under water? But in this dream I could keep up with Blackie as the vicious dog chased us. Sometimes in the dream I felt like I was Blackie, and not myself anymore. When we found him on the front step that morning I knew the dream was his last desperate message to let me know we still had our special bond. He had helped me in the past, and now I had helped him. Blackie licked my fingers as I petted him, and then he went to sleep forever. But he didn't stop dreaming with me for a long time. Happy dreams with him purring as we cuddled. That's why he was so special to me, and now it gives me good luck every time I adopt a new black cat.

There's a certain mysterious beauty in the dark presence of a black cat. I have had more than one in my life and even though they all had their individual personalities, they have taught me to not be afraid of the dark, as they are a part of it. If you ever walk at night and your black cat is nearby, you cannot see them in the darkness, and if they are walking toward you and you trip on them it may seem a bit frightening to think you might have hurt them. I learned to walk more carefully at night, to look around to peer into corners, to look and see if my cat is nearby. My black cats have taught me to carry no fear in the darkness. If I observe the darkness carefully, I can learn things about my own dark side. Normally I would not have wanted to look at the darkness without fear. My black cats have helped me to understand if I look into the dark and see them, I will always be comforted and I can be reassured morning will arise. When you look at things that were frightening at night, the light of day changes your outlook. Life has a dark side and a lighter side, and we must embrace them both.

Wednesday

CATS JUST WANT TO HAVE FUN!

Today was fun day. We got ta stay home by ourselves,. elixabet, she forget ta close da door to our room. So we got to play all day all over da house. Bambi say, What fun!!!

We ran jumped on all da furniture. We slid cross da magazines on da table. Oops... all falled down! Summa dat magazine paper is reel tasty. I tells ya!

Even Ninja, he run round, too. But, he so fat, he no can catch me! When I sneak up behind him, he growl, all tuffy cat. How come he a ninja, but dont know I was sneakin' up on him. Huh? I ask him. He say, he pretend to know I sneakin' cuz he testin' me skills at sneakin' I not so sure I unnerstand what is a ninja, and what a ninja s'posed ta teach me.

But, my Ninja, he so smart. He know how teach me, by pretendin' he don't know. Cuz I dont know dat he know. Den he act surprise when I catch him! Very much fun today.

Did I tell u how much me luv da fish tank? Got so many fishies. I love watchin dem. Speshally da Catfish! A big big tank. I run round n back n forth, and dem fishies are fasty, so fasty fishies! I never can catches dem fishies no matter how hards I try.

Ninja tell me, it cuz I don't know bout them fishies secret invisible sheilds they has. He say dat why he no bother ta chase them fishies, he say is no way ta catch em, not any. Cuz dey got invisible sheild fing. Dat why I cans see dem but not catches dem.

Bambi, she smile. She whisper ta me. She say, Yes, deres a way ta catch fishies. Ninja too big to know it, she say. He cants get up there. Ninja no has the flying no more. If he could use his old Ninja flyin' power, Bambi say, he be on top where dem fishies got no invisible sheilds.

How she know dat? I wonder. She say, cuz she been on top. She learn first day she come live wid elixabet. She say, jump behind TV, climb on top backa TV, den jump down in little space where all dem wires tangle, den jump up on top of fishies tank. She say long walking thing, very warm wid lights is good place ta stand. Den catch da fishies.

I lookin' up dere. I been sittin' on da bench watchin' fishies ever since I come here ta live. I nver pay tention to dat lights fing before. Aha! Bambi right. They's a place to get up on there.

Ninja say, NO, don't do it. Will cause disturbance in family harmony. Will change good energy of fishie home. Beside, he say, Spyder got no balance yet. He too young.

I show him. I show him. I got goods balances! So, behind da TV I goes. Up on backa da top of TV I goes. Den jump down in little space tangle wires. Uh, Oh!!! Uh, Oh!!! Dem wires dey ketched me, dey not let go a me. I gotsa fight dem wires.

Bambi, she watchin' me from on top TV. She lookin' down in small space. She eyes wide open. She see wires attack me.

Me say, Help me, Bambi!!!

Bfore she jump down. Ninja, he shout.

NO! Stop dat right NEOW!!!


Bambi, she freeze. Me all sideways upside down. Den Ninja say. Take breath. Be limp like sock. I look at Ninja like crazy, but do what he say. He is Ninja. He knows fings! I go limp like sock, eben if those wires snag me foreever. But, Ninja, he right. I limp like sock and fall down. Ninja he say. Wires no feel struggle cat no more and wires let go. See? Easy! Ninja, he smart. I so glad. Neow, Ninja say, we all go lie down.

Me and Bambi we look at each udder. We not done. No way. Too much fun. So we run and chase Ninja and he chase back all over house. He forget the fishies, but not me. not Bambi. So, Ninja gets real wore out. Him gots too much big belly. He say is Ho Tai belly. Is good fortune belly for rubbing on. Dat why he lay upside down so elixabet rub his belly for good happy luck come to her. But, he tired now and go to him cuddle spot and snooze.

Once we hear him snore, we know is time ta go catch dem fishies. I say, I go first. Bambi say not good idea. She lead way. but I pass her by and go to top. Bambi say be careful. Too many plastics green things. But, too late. Dey all knock down on floor. I fink dey knows to fly. But not sure. I lookin' down at dem. Bambi say. Watch Out!

Uh, OH!!! Now I fall down. Oh no! I fall down inside fishie house! Get wet fast! I fly outta dere quicky quick. I all wet, even one fishie come fly wid me. Bambi ates him. Dat not fair! Dat my fishie! But, when lick me fur, dat okay. Me fur gots fishie taste all over. Yum!

When elixabet come home she is all worry I is alright. Of course I is alright. What she fink? She fink I no can fly? She fink I no can catch fish? Den she put down bags and we go sniff dem. Hmmm. whatsat smells. Bambi say tell me later. She wanna watch what elixabet do. Bambi hide in bag and watch.

elixabet, she pick up all da plasty fingys looks like leaves, and put in big heavy bowl and put on top fishie house. Den she take cloth and wipe everyfing, all da splashes. Den she puts arms inside fishie house. What she gonna do? Catch us some fishies? She pullin up da lights. I jump up on bench. She say get down. Bambi say get down. Ninja say get down. Where he come from? No sleep no more. Huh!

Okay. I get down. elixabet take lots fings off toppa fishie house and leave open up. Bambi say dat how was when she first live here. But, Bambi go in dere alla time and elixabet cover it all up. but now it not cover again.

We gonna have fun tonight when she sleepin'!

Monday

Film School Genius

Someone dear to us is attending film school and this is one of her first completed projects. Enjoy!

A Heart Breaking Day in Cats Lives

It breaks my heart to see Spyder getting his treatment for his eyes. Though Elizabeth is very careful, I have never seen Spyder so frightened. I couldn't watch it disturbed me so much. I sat in the hall, though and listened. If it was me, I probably would have shredded her up before I let her do that to me.

But, I have to admit she handled it admirably. She went and got all the medicines together, opened them and set them on the table beside the sofa. Last time she did it in the bedroom but I think she does not want Spyder to associate the bedroom to being hurt, so changing locations seems like a good idea. She also got the Q tips and put them on a plastic bag so there would be less contamination.

Spyder's eyes have an inflammation that produces a drainage, which gets very dry and sticks to the inner eye near the tear duct. This just blocks the tear duct and makes things worse.

Elizabeth has an old red nightgown, a very pretty color I might add. Contrary to what humans say, we can see some colors and red is one of them. Her night gown is made of soft t shirt fabric which stretches and she wraps it tightly around Spyder, but because it has some give to it, he is not so tight that he feels strangled. She holds him like a human baby and speaks gently to him in human talk, then she makes good kitten noises to him to soothe him. Soon he relaxes and does not struggle.

But, then comes the part I don't like and I could tell by the stressed breathing that Spyder didn't like it either. Oh, he wasn't making a big fuss. He is a really brave boy. But, I know he wanted to cry. Yes, we cry too, just in a different way than humans. So, Elizabeth has to put drops of moisture in his eyes while holding his head in a certain position. At the same time she has to hold the eye open enough for the drops to fall in there, as Spyder is really good at closing his eyes up real tight. But once she got his eye open she let him see the bottle of eye drops coming toward his eye slowly. She didn't try to do anything fast or careless. And he remains calm enough that she can get the medicine in.

Then she has to wet the Q-tip and gently and slowly twirl it near where the drainage is built up. If the moisture drops havent softened it up then she has to add more drops. Finally when this is clear. Then she has to administer the prednisone drops. I heard her telling his she understood how it felt as she had to take this medicine herself and as I peaked around the corner I thought I saw a tear in her eye as she picked up the next bottle.

Now I know that next medicine must have burned had to hurt real bad because at one point Spyder called out, "ma ma". Elizabeth stopped and cradled and petted Spyder until his breathing was back to normal. She made all the right mama cat noises at him and he was soothed. I didn't know she knew so much of our language. I am pretty sure she doesn't know what she is saying but she sure can imitate the sounds well enough that it soothed Spyder almost to sleep. Unfortunately she had to open the other eye and put the antibiotic drop in there again.

Even Ninja said, It broke his heart to know Spyder has to be treated like that, but we are sure it is necessary, otherwise if things progress, he might end up blinded. And we can't have that for our pretty little boy. One blue eye and one gold eye should not be blind eyes.

When Elizabeth was finished she opened up the nightgown and gently lowered Spider to the floor. Ninja took the boy into the other room telling him what a master he was becoming. Spyder was very happy to hear that. Ninja told him he was proud of him, and someday he would be the perfect model of a cat. That made Spyder so happy that he initiated a game of tag right then and there. After they played they went to lie down and rest. Spyder is looking up to Ninja now and it is good.

Saturday

CATS HAVE TEARS!

Me luvs me little piece of sheepskin.

Me luvs me little carrier.
Me luvs ta go inna car for ride.


Me luvs ta get weighted at the vet. I is now seven pownds and two ouwsenz! elixabet say I grow fast and big. Yup! that me! grow fast and big!

Me luvs da Vet, too. He very nice Vet. Always pet me. Always say what nice boy. Handsome me is. He say I is very unusual cat, 'cause I has Heterochromia Iridium. Unique, he say. Dat mean me "odd eye cat", he say.


But, I no lyke when Vet put paper in me eye and hold it dere to make me cry. He did one eye, den he did other eye. Me wanna cry. But nope! No has enuff tears, he say. Me feel lyke lotsa tears. It hurted. But, elixabet, she pet me n' I holded real still. Just lyke Ninja say... "focus on stillness".

Den da Vet, he drop green color in my eyes. I no want green eyes! I want me own eyes! One blue n' one gold. But, den da Vet, he put orange color in me eyes. Make evryfing look funny. Not haha funny. Make evryfing look strange.

Has eye infection he say. Give medicine he say. Every day? I say. elixabet noddin her head.

At home, Ninja say is good optoonity for practice stillness.

Bambi say is okay. I still has me one blue eye... one gold eye. I still good lookin' boy!

Monkey in the House

I spent the day reminding Spyder on how to maintain his focus. Our exercise was for him to concentrate upon the mousie without showing intent. But, it seemed he was distracted by being too close to the closet doors. He kept saying he wanted to see what was inside.

"Focus, Focus, Focus, young Spyder. Just think of the mouse. Do not show him your intent. See your self running up behind him silently." I say.

"Do not get so close that he can detect you, but make your decision to fly and leap to catch him unawares. And do not let him know of your intent."

It seems he cannot pay attention. I keep trying to explain to him that he when he controls his "Catra", he can gain supercat powers. I know that he is young, but he is not too young to learn from a Master such as myself. I can guide him along his path. It is better that I guide him than for him to have no guidance at all. I only had those honorable dogs to teach me, but he has a true Zen Master to teach him. He will learn the Way of Cats.

I had just about decided his energy was wasted. He needed to go play or take a nap, or whatever it is he does when he is not under my tutelage. So, I told him lessons were done for the day and off he went. I settled myself down and proceeded to perform my ablutions, when out of the corner of my eye, but what do I see? It is Spyder running like an ambitious Samurai around the corner and up onto the bed.

"I can do it" he mewed.

"I..... can.... do.... it."

And he did! Well almost.

But, I will give him credit. He made a spectacular move. We had earlier been practicing the Monkey pose and discussing the various powers of Goku. So, obviously some of the Ninja energies that I passed on to him are beginning to stick.

Any kitten who can fly has potential.

Oh, didn't I mention?

Young Spyder flew from the bed to the top of the closet, a distance of about 9 feet. He certainly did land his front paws upon the shelf. so that counts as a "land" in Ninja training terms. But the back paws didn't quite make it. He made a wonderful "save" though, using his back claws to steady himself while he whirled his tail to give him that catastic lift only the strong can develop. He was able to confidently claw his way completely onto the shelf without falling off.

I bestow upon young Spyder, his second and most auspicious name of, "Monkey".

Spyder Monkey.

Has a ring to it. Don't you think?

Thursday

HIKIKOMORI SPEAKS UP!

I have been a bit shy lately, well, maybe just reclusive. A lady needs her peace and quiet... time to meditate, to go inward, to experience my true self. Ninja says I am becoming Hikikomori and will inherit loneliness if I continue. I don't think he understands me.

On Sunday, Ninja and Spyder were possessed by inordinate excitement. The Monk and Elizabeth went away for several hours leaving us to fend for ourselves. Of course, this is the natural way of things. Or it should be. However, Ninja and Spyder are getting earnest in their attempts to establish dominance. I know this is supposed to be the natural way, also.

They seem to forget that I am sovereign here. Ninja may act like he is going to run the family, but if he plays too hard with Spyder, then I don't even give him warning. I immediately attack. He never stands his ground with me. I respect his great age and wisdom, but I wonder about his claims to being a Zen Master. Ninja may want to be top cat, but as soon as Spyder gains some maturity, the two of them will have to face off. I suspect that Ninja might not be entirely satisfied with the results.

The two of them tire me out having to referee their little territorial disputes. Can't we all just share alike? I am unable to relax in my boudoir. Spyder doesn't recognize my private boundary. What's a lady to do? While they amuse themselves with their games of Charge and Slay, I retreat to the garage through our personal kitty door. There is an old piece of carpet out there convenient to our litter boxes. I hate to admit it, but it's the only place I can get away from the two of them. As long as Spyder doesn't discern how to pass through the little swinging door, I will only have to temporarily interact with Ninja. And if he enters the garage, I know he's not coming for a visit, so I return into the house. There are certain things a lady just doesn't need to see. A lady needs her privacy!

I was so glad when Elizabeth and the Monk returned. Then, Ninja and Spyder could vie for their attention. After the Monk left, Ninja went to lie down on his spot on the headboard, only to discover that his bedding had fallen upon the floor, probably due to their rowdy behavior. Sigh! I suppose boys will be boys.

So, Ninja decided to lay at the foot of the bed. This disturbed both Spyder and I. We didn't know what areas to claim as our own, because now they were overlapping. I just didn't feel like I had enough room to nuzzle my sheepskin and get a good knead going.

As it turned out, Spyder and I ended up being crowded together. I don't mind, but every time Elizabeth moves around when sleeping we get jostled. And she does a lot of tossing and turning. I wanted to go back and lie down in my boudoir, but the door was closed, so I just went and sat in front of the door. I'm sure Elizabeth was mortified when she found me out like that in the morning. She picked me up and cuddled me. But, I was not about to forgive her right away. Thank heavens she doesn't insist on holding on to me when I am feeling this way! So, I went in to have some privacy.

Yesterday, I expected the three of us could have some comfortable confined social time together. We all have our established places in our room and when the door is closed we are quite cordial. We all usually nap at this time. However, when Esther came to visit, Elizabeth forgot the close the door. She might have remembered if she had stayed, but she had to leave the house while Esther did her work, which is very noisy!!!

Vacuum cleaner
Washing Machine
Clattering Dishes
Shower Bathtub Water Running
In and out with trash

I think you get the picture. I can't even go out into the garage, because the dryer vent is out there and the wind whistles through it so violently I get very uncomfortable. I then, retreat to my window.

Spyder and Ninja were affected by all this cleaning, too. I am thankful, at least that there are no chemicals to stink up our environment, to burn our eyes or insult our noses. But, I do wish Elizabeth would remember to close us into our space before Esther visits. That way, all that noise and clamor can be muffled. Then we only have to deal with it towards the end when the cleaning has to take place in our room.

The boys were pretty skittish from all the prolonged turbulence, after Elizabeth came home. It is different when the are creating the swirling energy than when machines and people are stirring things up. Since they couldn't relax, she was not able to relax either. I think one stress tumbles over another until it all clumps into one big vibrating mass. The whole house is filled with it.

Cleaning house day may clean the house, but it makes the home filled with stress if we are left to cope in the middle of it. Sometimes I find messy house to be more tranquil. Many more hiding spaces that way. I made sure Elizabeth know how distracted we all were by hiding in the garage a very long time. Finally, she got the hint, and brought my boudoir into her room and placed it on the middle of her bed. This was a very good solution to the problem. It made a statement to the boys exactly who is reigns here, and shows them both which side of the bed on which to sleep. Unfortunately, as I have mentioned before, Ninja has a terrible snoring problem. There was no way I could spend the whole night with him thundering away. A lady should not be required to tolerate it.

I got up and went to sit by the door. That wasn't enough, at first, for Elizabeth to notice. So I reached under the door, curved my paw up underneath and "gently" yanked on the door so that it rattled, quite admirably, I must say. I continued to do so until Elizabeth became conscious of my message.

She does read me fairly well, but I wish humans could speak our mental intuitiveness. Then it wouldn't be so necessary to create such major efforts to make ourselves understood. I have to give her credit, though. She tries!

Tuesday

Cat Trains Human

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I am da most awesum kitten dat ever was!

Dat's what elixabet say when I began her obedience training. So, I was trainin' elixabet, see. I try menny tymes before she unnerstand what she sposed ta do.

I hunted for me mousie all over da house. He gots away so menny tymes. I hunt everywhere. But no can find him.

They's so many mousies n balls n toys, but I wants only me special mousie. Da one wit da blue fur and no tail. I ate his tail one time. elixabet worry bout dat for a while. But, is okay. When I was little me mama brought us kittens mouses all da tyme. So I know what to do wid dem. I miss me Mama sometymes but Bambi say it okay, Bambi can be my pretend mama. So, dats okay wid me. Don't hardly member me brudders n sissies no more. Dats okay, too. I got Bambi. I got Ninja. I got elixabet and da Monk. So, I not lonesome. I know from da shelter dat they got good homes, too.

I ask Ninja, where me mousie? I ask Bambi, where me mousie? Ninja say I has plenty toys. Go play wid one of dem dats in the dresser cubby space. Is okay, he say. Can have fun dat way.

But I wants me speshul mousie!!!

Bambi say, did you check behind doors? in corners? hidden under fings? Where did you have it last time you played with it?

I dunno. Don't member.

Toys do dat ya know. Toys likes ta hide cus dey wants ta play hide n seek. Sometymes dey jus wanna rest. Sometymes dey jus disappear forever.

I don't wants me mousie ta disappear!

I lookt all dem places what Bambi said. Den I look under frigerator. Aha! Der was my mousie. I finds my mousie under da fridge. I such a good hunter. Huh?

I get mousie out from under da fridge. I work hard. Out. Out. Come out mousie. Let's play. Me paws was dirty all way up to my... whatcha callem.... elbohs? An elixabet she see me all dirty. But I gots me mousie in me mouf, and she think she gonna take it away from me but I hang on tyte to mousie. She want to pick me up, wash me off, but I get away from her. Ha ha! she give up.

So now she ready to learn from me. I run all ziga zag in front of her. She laugh. She sit down to watch. So I puts da mousie in front of her. Ya know? Like a gift. Like when me Mama brought gifts. So, I sit dere and wait. She coo at me."What a good kitty!" Ov course I good kitty! She don't hafta tell me dat. But is nice to know she figger dat out. So, I pounce at mousie, but not so hard. Just pounce near it, so she think I wanna play.

Ninja n Bambi, dey watchin alla tyme. Dey smilin. Dey laughin. Dey fink so funny dat I bother to try to teach elixabet tricks and trainin her ta do what I want. I gonna show dem, I fink. I gonna show dem!

She is gettin' it! She know I wanna play. She pick up mousie n toss him across da room. Yeah, she got teh idea now! Okay, so I runs to catch mousie. Make her laugh. I grabs mousie in my teef, and bring mousie back to her. Jus out of reach so she know I want her to get it. She pick up mousie again and trhow it. Yay! she one smart hooman! So I tell her wid a little mew purr. She a good girl! She smile. I runs n bring back mousie. She so happy she learning. I train her all day.

She get up and go to bafroom. Comb her hair all fallin' down in her face. Take her pills. I foller her in dere wid me mousie. Yup! I play wid him, bounce him all round da baftub so she not forget ta play.

Den she go lie down on dat big bed. She fink I gonna let her rest? I leap up wid mousie n she throw again n again.

I run,
I jump,
I leap,
I flies,
I smash into wall,


I dig behind door n under bed to find mousie each time, so she never forget how to play da game of Throw. She call it fetch, but I call it Throw.

She can call it fetch if she wantsta. But, I jus happy she learn so good n fast.

We play hard til I huff n puffin' and she got arm tired.

I climb on puter table wit my mousie and lay it down dere so mousie not get lost again.

We play again tomorrow. See if she member her training.

Now I rest. All tired out.

Monday

Eight Years in the Life of a Ninja

Well, here I am another year older, and wiser, I like to think. We had a great party today and celebrated with a tuna cake cut into three parts. There were no candles on the cake. Miss E doesn't believe in having candles. She thinks they are dangerous. That's okay by me. Though candles can bring about great states of relaxation by staring at them. I can stare all I like in relaxations without candles. I rather like the warmth of the stained glass lamp shining down on my fur. I don't think a candle can do that.

The years have passed by in a blur. I've had a good life. I can't complain. The only life I ever knew was with the couple I lived with and those two dogs.

One was a Lhasa Apso. Her name was Dolly... Dolly Lamar.... get it? No?

Dolly told me she is from a long line of sacred Dolly Lamars from Tibet. She is the 123rd in her lineage. She was very wise, but very sometimes hard to understand. She spent a lot of time chanting in some ancient gutteral sound. Once she was quiet, if a bell rang, she would start up again. It sounded like "oooooommahneeepadmeeeeehoooo" I think there was something about her background or training that was set to bells. if the door bell rang she would start up. If I jingled my collar bell, she would stop, and then if I jingled it again, she would start again. So, I tried not to jingle at all. That was one of my first lessons in becoming a Ninja. Being silent in my stealth techniques.

The other dog was an Akita. He was huge! His name was Kain Doshi, but our people just called him Doshi. He claimed to be a warrior monk of the highest caliber and an expert teacher of Ninjutsu martial arts. I called him Sensei, which means teacher in Japan, where his ancestors came from. Though he was large, he was quiet compared to Dolly. He really knew how to just sit, and be. I learned a lot from Sensei.

I miss those two. But when I was living with them it could be very difficult to get through a day with both of them on my tail to learn this lesson and that. It could be very confusing, since both had different points of view. Yet, they were united on their goals to train me to their "Way". Unfortunately for them I am not a dog and could not fit into their "pact". Fortunately for me, I am a superior black cat who has taken the best of their knowledge and put it into practice. Even they could never reach the state of being one can reach in the practice of "Stillness". I am actually quite excellent and can hold that pose for a very long time. No dog I know of can keep stillness for that long, always being distracted by people calling them, responding to whistling, and cars driving up to the house, and so on.

I do miss them, it's true. I miss the couple, too. Even though they were always yelling at me.

"KOBE!!! Get down from there." I had to get away from my incessant but well meaning teachers. Didn't I? How else was I to do that but by sitting on top of the refrigerator?

"KOBE, Come here!" What did they think? That I was a dog and would come running when summoned? Excuse me, even a tough guy like me has a sense of dignity. Besides I had no idea they were referring to me when they were shouting KOBE, KOBE, KOBE all the time. Dolly and Sensei showed me that when they are shouting like that to go hide and whimper, usually under the table. But, I would never go under the table with the dogs. I couldn't stand the whimpering. It was just too high pitched for my sensitive ears. So, I would go hide somewhere else. The couple thought I was "aloof", and seemed quite happy to leave it that way, as the dogs were happy to lick their faces all the time. That left me plenty of time to practice my Zen skills.

But, that last year I lived there, the couple were always bickering. I was almost relieved when we were all put in our carriers and taken to the shelter. Dolly swung into her chanting continuously that whole trip. I felt sad that my own Sensei would howl like a common dog, then too. It was quite painful to be in the middle of that. I was so relieved when we were separated but I didn't realize I wouldn't see my teachers again. That is one thing they were sure of when we were traveling in the car. I had blocked out all their noise, but they Knew it was Good bye.. Sayonara because that was part of their last messages to me.

At the shelter nice man took me out of the carrier and "inspected" me, saying I was in perfect shape. Of course, I was, even though I was already seven years old. They say that is 45 in people years. I suppose that is venerable enough for me.

So when I came to live here and was called KOBE, I turned and went in the other direction. It didn't take long before the Monk recognized who I really was, and pointed out to Elizabeth that I was truly a Ninja. He is a very smart man, and a brother in the monkhood so to speak, as it seems he can be "still" in the midst of chaos, too. And even though he has an innate fear of cats, he is able to maintain his integrity by his own zen practice. It seems that Keli, the Dowager Queen was his first teacher of cat acceptance. Though, I have noticed, even though he is able to pet me, he has never attempted to pick me up. I recall, though, that he would let Jeffery sprawl himself out from head to toe on his lap on occasion.

Now that Keli and Jeffery are gone, I have a lot of responsibility around here. First and foremost, I guard over the household by keeping my post at the head of the bed on the bookcase headboard. Then, of course, I must be a good example and older brother to Bambi, though she has little respect for me when she chases me about. I guess I still have a lot to learn about patience. And now that little Spyder has joined us, it is imperative for me to let him know who is boss around here, and teach him some manners. Though Bambi insists that she will take care of raising him in the Way of the Cat.

Sometimes I'm not sure which is more challenging, to live in a household with two dogs, or to live in a household with two other cats?

I know one thing for sure. The past is the past, and it is done. That is the way of the Zen Cat. The future with Bambi and Spyder is yet untold. Though, I may attempt to influence them with my abilities and powers, we may not always see eye to eye. Worry not, I say to myself. The future is the future, and it is not this moment now. Spending this moment now worry, is not living. It is worrying. For right now, I will just be and live the moment.

Happy Birthday to me.

Wednesday

Pink Feather Boa

Is me, Spyder, an I got a story ta tell ya!

It so funny!

Miss Bambi, she got's herslef in trubble. Well not too bad, ennyways.


We was playin mousie hunting, an runnin' back n forth everywhere. Bambi saw a spider. Not, me, of course. She saw one o them little creepy crawly things that go so fast ya can hardly catch em. Though I caught one the first time I ever saw one. An I ate him all gone! That's why me name is Spyder!

Enyhow, Bambi, she was so excited to see the spider that she stopped playin wid me and went instead to catch the spider. Well, he was much faster than she was. An he went hidin beneath some plastic bags on the floor. Now, Bambi, she aint afraid of no plastic bags. Seems like Ninja is, an I aint too sure about em.

So, Bambi, she dives right into them plastic bags. They was all filled up wid sumpin'. An you know what? She quickly lose her interest in that spider. He got away completely. I didn't even get a chance to get him, cause she wouldn't move outta my way. She was soo interested in them bags.

You know why? 'cause she recognize the smell o sumpin she knowed before. Yup! she knowed the smell of those feather thingys. People calls em boas. Though they not a Boa. Even I know that is a big dangerouos snake we all gotta stay away from.

So, Bambi, see, she knows those feather boas are inside the baggs, and she begin to push at the bag and pull at the bag. Before you know it she unties the bag. I know Elixabet was watchin all dis time, and she was smilin' as we played. But, when she saw Bambi opened da bag and we begun to eat the feathers, Elixabet, she come straightaway and grabbs da bags and feathers all away from us. Den she tie up da bag all tight and put up in da closet.

Now why she buy dem feather boas for us if she aint gonna let us play with dem? Huh?

Monday

Rain and Wind

We waited up all night.... well past 2 AM. That's when Elizabeth went to bed. But, no rain at that time. Though the wind was blowing.

Finally, the rains came in torrents. The wind was loud and it blew the trees into a frenzy. It seemed their branches would fly off! Spyder was so incredibly excited that he could barely contain himself. He kept running back and forth between the plate glass door in the other room and Elizabeth's bedroom window. Unfortunately for her, in order to get to her window, we have to leap from her bed. Spyder is so enthusiastic he runs right across her legs when he is on the way to her window. Luckily she didn't wake up. I think the rain sings her to sleep.


I sat up in the window with him so I could explain all the intricacies of rain. Rain comes from the sky, but it is the same as what comes from our water bowl. It has a different smell, a smell of the sky and the clouds that pass by. It tastes of wildness and that flavor comes from the clouds who pull up the flavor from the earth to the sky.



I pointed out to Spyder that he is a very special cat because he wears the sky color in his one eye, and the gold of the sun in the other. I reminded him that he has a sacred cat name that his mother gave to him. He says he remembers. It was "Morning Sky". I thought that was funny, because in the mornings he is too asleep to even welcome the morning sun. Maybe his mother should have named him "Sky at Sunset", but who am I to differ from her. I named all my kittens with sacred names, and they come from the deep earth wisdom we all possess. So, his mother would not have been wrong in the name she gave him.

Sometimes when the clouds come down to the earth and become fog, you can sniff the same smell as the rain drops. We need to recognize the rain for it's own being and the purpose it serves in our lives. We would die without it, my mother once told me. And I know she was telling the truth. After all, she had spent all her life outside and was only captured when I had not even opened my eyes. We were newborn kittens then, and didn't understand her howling and grief. Oh how she missed being outside.

Spyder didn't understand why the rain appeared. He wondered if it would go on forever. I explained that if the rain would go on forever it would not be a good thing. When the raindrops fall on us, we get wet. Some cats don't mind this, some cats do. I recall Jeffery telling Ninja and I that Keli loved the rain, and any kind of water that sprinkled or fell upon her. She even enjoyed baths. But if the rain falls forever, then not even Keli would continue to enjoy it. There must be a time for rain and a time for dryness. Each has it's own purpose. Spyder just didn't understand this, so I stopped trying to explain it, and just told him we could enjoy watching it for it's own sake, without asking why it exists.

Soon, morning came and we were all still awake. As the sun rose the rain ceased. We all had the ultimate pleasure of watching the sun embrace all the raindrops clinging to the tree leaves. What a spectacular sight to watch the trees turn into more beauteous beings with such lovely decorations adorning them. They were actually shimmering in the joy of it.

Ninja wasn't all that interested. He said "Rain is rain, and air is air, and wind is wind. It is all zen to me!"

I don't understand what he meant, but it is interesting to see how peaceful he can be about it all. I used to meditate on the rain. But with Spyder around, it is nearly impossible with him running from window to window and asking so many questions!




If you perceive rain in her eyes
and thunder in her soul,
Point towards the moon
and let her sink in the magic.
Let the moonlight coat her.


From the poem, Where Forever Lasts
by Ruku Taneja
Mumbai,India
July 3 2009

Sunday

Awaiting the Rain

There is a fragrance upon the winds. I am familiar with it. I recall it from when I was a kitten. It means the rains are coming. I am looking forwarad to it. It has been too long. It will be interesting to see what Spyder's reaction will be. He hasn't lived long enough yet to know what is rain.

Ninja and I have been discussing it. Such a nostalgic conversation for him. He has been through seven rainy seasons. He was so reminiscent of his first rainy season. He was but a kitten then, like Spyder.

Ninja tells me about one time when he was living with the dogs that he went outside. He intended only to look around, but the wind blew the door shut, and he was left outside to get soaked to the skin, while he tried his best to hide from it. His people were looking everywhere for him.

He waited for them to find him but they never did. Finally they let the dogs out and thank heavens the dogs had enough sense to sniff him out. And he got to go back inside, then.

The last time the rainy season began is when I had my kittens. It was damp all the time and I tried to keep them warm. I know I was a good mother, but then one day my kittens were gone and believe me, it was the saddest day of my life.

That is why I'm glad Spyder is in my life. Though he is not my kitten, I sometimes feel like he is. Spyder is all excited listening to us talk about the rain and can hardly wait. He will be in for a surprise don't you think?

Isn't he adorable with that look of anticipation on his face?

Thursday

Bambi Speaks Her Mind

It's been a challenging day. Elizabeth wasn't feeling well and so the whole morning was wasted. It's not like we sit around waiting for her to play with us. But, life does seem to be more interesting when she is around.

She has been feeding Spyder and I in the spare room and shuts the door so that Ninja will not come in and eat our food. I wouldn't mind at all if he wants some of mine. I eat so little and always leave a some left over. That's what a lady does. Later, when we have finished all we are going to eat, she takes our bowls and puts them inside the armoire. Even I have not figured out how to open it, and Ninja is hopelessly clueless. He still thinks he would find a tasty morsel up on top of the armoire. She also locks our bag of food in there. Smart! She noticed that Ninja had started to scratch a hole in the bag the other day as it was kept in the kitchen. So, now, Ninja hasn't much chance for cheating on his diet. Poor thing! But, I must say it's working. He is beginning to be more active and getting a little bit sleek. Don't you think so? Look at the picture above. That was Ninja and Spyder eating together. Wouldn't you say Ninja is a big boy?

Don't get me wrong, it's not like Elizabeth is starving him. He has access to food all the time. But, it is diet food. Supposed to be good for him. But, he says it tasted like cardboard. I'm not so sure that is so bad. After all, our scratching box is made of cardboard and it has a delightful taste of catnip. But, I will respect Ninja's opinion as to the flavor of cardboard. Admittedly, I haven't much taste for it myself. I think Ninja just might be feeling a little left out, like he is being treated like a second class citizen. Spyder and I have room service, and he has to eat in the garage. Though, when I pass by his feeder, I can see he can eat as much as he wants. No small servings for him.

Elizabeth pulled herself out of bed, fed us and left for her book club. She is to lead the group today. I worry for her as she was up until 4 AM trying to finish that book. I don't think she did. How is she going to talk as though she had? She looks so tired. She locked Spyder, Ninja and I in the spare room before she left. She always does that when Esther is coming over. But, when Esther came over she opened the door to get the vacuum cleaner and Ninja took off running and she just went about her work. So Spyder ran to see what she was doing in the kitchen.

I went to the bed and laid on the lambswool sheepskin. I understand that it belonged to the once much loved Keli, and I can still catch a waft of her sweet fragrance when I roll over on it. Elizabeth has cut it into three pieces. Two smaller ones and one larger one. The two smaller ones can fit into the travel carriers, but right now one is in my bed and the other is on the spare bed for whoever wants to lie upon it. Funny how Ninja is not at all interested in it. Buy Spyder and I just love it. The big one on Elizabeth's bed, she put there just for us, and in the evening before she falls asleep Spyder and I claim a part of it. We both like to knead it a litte bit before settling in.

Elizabeth returned from her book group. She was limping and went to lie down. I know enough to leave her alone when she is like that. Her pain vibrates all over the place and it makes me restless. Ninja, with all his Zen training, prefers to lie down beside her. Ninja says he can pull the pain right out of her with his paws. I think it just makes her feel better because she's got that fat cat to pet. He purrs and loves to lie down upside down for her to rub his belly. I don't think rubbing belly is a Zen practice.

But, what do I know? I'm just a pretty white cat with thoughts of my own.

Wednesday

One Bored Kitty

Boring! Boring! Boring! Dis is Spyder. I spy on those two lazy grown up cats. Ninja, he lay 'round alla time, 'n snore, snore, snore. Sumtimes I think, he gonna just explode wit da snorin'. Mebbe dat why he fallin offin da bed. Huh? And dat Ninja. He sneaky boy. So sneaky. No wonder his name Ninja! 'cept he not brave. He a wussy cat. Even elixabet say so. and she know a wussy cat wen she see one. I think she know.

I so bored. I gonna do sumpin 'bout it. I leap up on bed with bestest skill. I try sneak up on Ninja, but he got good ears. Hear me comin' even on soft blankies. How he do dat? I dunno!

So I sneaking closer and closer. That Ninja he growling quiet first, den he growling louder 'n louder. Den him HISS! Wit him big mout open so bigger like panther. Anyway, he say dat is panther hiss, and dat mean last warnin'. But, warnin' me of what? Ever time I sneak up and he do dat, I get closer and closer and he growl and hiss, and I get closer and closer. He give big last warning, but do nothing. So, I just keep closer until I touching him. He huffy puffy go way.

Ha! Now maybe he play wid me. What you think? He play wit me? Naw.... Boring! Boring! Boring!

See my pitchur? Dat how Ninja make da big Hissy. I can do it good too. See? Not very good pitchur tho 'cuz I move and make too fuzzy. Nex time I hold still for camera. No make fuzzy wuzzy. You see soon... nex time. But, did get pretty good one. Huh?

I hungry all da time. But no can find food. Where elixabet hid it? Ninja think he know and take all dat trouble to get up on the condo, den get up on the printer table, den get up on da printer. elixabet no like dis. No way! She put big towel on printer and it slippery. Ninja get on dere and almost slip again 'n again! But him determined. He gonna get my food and Bambi's food. Den when him get way up on top of da compuder closet he not find no food. HA! Elixabet, she fool him! No more dat cat food is dere. ha! ha!

But, dat also mean, I got no food cuz it locked up inside dere. It my food she hidin' So I go in kit-chin and see if Ninja food is dere. He don't mind me eatin' it. He don't like it. He say is diet food. Is tastin' pretty good to me. I would eat it all gone. But, dat elixabet, she no want me eatin' diet food. Not good for me, she say. I gots to eat baby food... kitten food. Other is more intresting. But, when she shut me and Bambi in the room with our food, I eat mine all gone, and part of Bambi's too.

Bambi, she say, is okay, kid. you can eat it. She say she is Lady and like to eat like Lady. That okay wid me, cuz I get her foods. Know what I mean?

Bambi, she no wanna play today either. Boring! Boring! Boring! Alla time I go pounce and she no want me pouncin'. She let me have it real quick. She hold me down. She slap me face. She one tough Lady! I go way. kick da jingle ball. Good attack! I succeed. Jingle ball retire to under washer. I git him later, though. Uou watch and see! OkY? dON't forgit now.

I git so bored, so bored, I go hide. I hide so good for long time. I hide so good nobuddy fine me. Not Bambi, Not Ninja, Not even elixabet. She not find me either. So, I hidin' real good. You wanna know ware I hided? Huh? In da big closet! Dey not knows how I get inside dat closet.

Dat closet door. It shut tight. Wanna know how I get in dere? I slip in between doz two sliding doors. Just push da one behind da first one, and it push open just fine enough for me. I know Ninja too fat to git in dare. No way! Fat Ninja. He too fat. I know Bambi. She a Lady. She no want to go in me secret closet place ennyway, even if she knew whar I was. but those guys, dey don't know. I hided so good.

Boring closet, all dark and nothing to play with. just a buncha boxes. So I climb up to high box and go sleep. So bored. So bored. I bore myself to sleep. Ha!

Boring! Boring! Boring!

Tuesday

Awesome Cat Blogging!

Hey there Dudes and Dudettes! This is the Ninja blogging. We have had an awesome day. Well, parts of it anyways.

What's not so awesome? Elizabeth has put me on a diet. It's impossible! I love to chew on dry food, a lot, but not this cardboard stuff. Funny thing is, that little pipsqueak, Spyder, loves the stuff. He comes and nudges me away anytime E puts the bowl down for me. Well, he can have it! I'd much rather have those sweet little niblets made especially for kittens. You know. The stuff that's chock full of calories to provide maximum growing. Yeah, that stuff. I love it!

Before, E was feedin Spyder and Bambi up on the table by the window. She thought I wouldn't fit up there because of the big ol' lamp sittin on it. But, I'm the Ninja! I am the sneaky one. Whenever she wasn't lookin' that was when I was up there enjoying that special kitten food.

But, now, alas, she has changed things around. She's feedin' those two in the spare room. And feedin' me in the kitchen. She thought if she did that, then we would all eat what we were supposed to. But, I had her fooled again. She thought I was too fat to make my way up on top of the computer cabinet and get to those two bowls. Even Bambi and Spyder didn't know that's where she put them when they weren't looking. But I saw her and it didn't take too much effort to get up there. It was a bit treacherous, but it was worth it to get that kitten food.

She finally got to serving those two for 20 minutes then locking their food away in the cabinet. I cannot get the doors open. Phooey!!!

She thoughtfully put a whole open feeder out in the garage for me to have access to my food anytime. But, I really don't like to eat it. Did I already say that? Right!

Bambi and I can go through the cat door to get out there for our litter boxes. But, little pipsqueak hasn't figured it out yet. He thinks we just magically disappear. It's just as well that he can't get out there, otherwise he would be eating my diet food! I don't know why he likes it so much when he has that delicious stuff. He eats that enthusiastically, too.

I shouldn't complain. I do eat it, and I have become a bit slimmer. I must admit. And I find that I am friskier, too. I have even been playing with the mice lately. Though I make sure those young ones don't know it. I play when they aren't around. Plus, I do find that I feel a lot more affectionate towards E. And as long as those two are locked in the other room enjoying their 4 meals a day, I've got her all to myself. And, we sure do get some cuddling in then. See? Now, that's awesome!

This is awesome! E did an odd thing today. She took Spyder away in the carrier and they went for a drive. He didn't even have an appointment. She told him she just wanted him to enjoy the car. They were gone for hours! When they returned, Spyder told me he wasn't scared at all. I believe him. He is quite mellow about the car. That last time, he just went to sleep.

But, one thing that bothered Spyder was that when E drove up that steep hill, he started to freak out. That's the same steep hill where Jeffrey got all excited and tried to claw his way out of his carrier and got sick, and you know the rest.

Spyder tells me he doesn't really understand what made him get upset. He really had been enjoying the ride up to that point. He says after they went past the place where Jeffery was upset, then Spyder wasn't upset anymore. How odd! Don't you think?

I asked him if he got upset because he remembered this was where Jeffery got sick. I asked him if he could smell the forest that got burned last year. Did that upset him? He's just a little kit and doesn't seem to get it. He only knows that he didn't like that one part of their drive, and suddenly he was crying out. He didn't know why.

I think there must be some primordial built in radar that we cats have. That something special that lets us know when there is danger. Whether Spyder was remembering that was where Jeffery got upset, or whether he smelled that danger of the old fire, it doesn't matter. We just got that extra something that makes us sensative.

When they returned, E had a plastic bag that had a treat for us, two big feather boas. I watched as she pulled them out of the bag. They were so excited to play with them. Even some of the feathers came loose. But, you know, they aren't as interesting when they are just laying there not doing anything. Finally, E put them away. Later, Bambi discovered the bag hanging on the doorknob. She shredded the bag with her claws!!! I know how sharp her claws are. She snagged me on the nose the other day.

Anyhow, after shredding the bag, of course, the feather boas fell out and Bambi had the time of her life. The kitten was in the other room snoozing on the bed. Otherwise, he would have been in on it, too. I have to admit, I was a bit relieved when E caught on. I'd like to see the boas last for a while so I can play with them, too!

All that ruckus tired me out, so I climbed up on the bookcase headboard above the bed and curled up to sleep on my bed. I know I snore because E nudges me occasionally and tells me so. This time that little pest didn't come to bother me so, I must have gone into a deep sleep.

The next thing I knew, I was falling in between the headboard and the dresser. I even bumped my head! I was not in the least bit ready to fall on my feet. It was a terribly clumsy thing to do, but I was helpless. Dead asleep, and boompt, there I was sailing through the air, and kerplunk on the floor, bedding and all.

I must have stretched out my legs and pushed myself, and maybe then, the bedding just slipped across the headboard and there it went. I really was dazed for a while, and E made a big fuss over me. I was so embarrassed in front of those two white cats that I went into the living room and hid behind the curtain in the window for a while.

This was absolutely the least awesome part of my day.