Regular readers know that more than one elderly female resides with me. The lovely Lorelei Lee, our (mostly) Siamese cat, turned 20 a few days ago.
I’m suspicious of attempts to compare animal and human life spans so I won’t tell you how old Lorelei is in feline years. But 20 is a significant age for her species.
She spent her birthday much as she spends many other days, although she was given extra special treats during the day—a morsel of pound cake here, a teaspoon of ice cream there.
Here was her basic schedule (which will be familiar to cat people).
Lounge in bed until forced out by cruel human who wants to wash the sheets.
Eat a few kibbles.
Use litter box, being careful to kick extra litter as far out of the box as possible.
Loiter in kitchen with large eyes until a shmear of cream cheese is deposited in a saucer on the floor.
Nap by self.
Hover at table during lunch begging for soup. Lap up soup.
Nap with Taffy.
Wake up and glare at vacuum cleaner.
Nap with Truffle (dogs make soft and warm napping companions).
Start yelling for dinner 1-1/2 hours before dinner time.
FINALLY eat dinner (baby food at this point in her life).
Use litter box, again kicking litter onto floor since previous litter has been cleaned up.
Nap by self.
Watch humans while they eat their dinner in the hope that a small amount of food will be deposited on the floor.
Negotiate with the dog when said food is deposited on the floor.
Stand by water dish emoting until fresh water with crushed ice replaces the old water.
Nap with Truffle.
Eat a few more kibbles.
Get into bed. Groom Truffle and Tinky. Sleep.
As I said, this is a pretty typical day in Lorelei’s life, although of course we don’t change the sheets and vacuum every day.
Just as I learn from my mother, I learn from Lorelei Lee. She has many traits a person could do well to emulate.
Here are a few of them.
First, the girl has admirable focus. I tend to get distracted. Once Lorelei Lee has decided it’s time to do something she exerts all her energy to make it happen. I’m trying to cultivate that attitude.
She’s also good at just letting go and relaxing, hence all the naps. I don’t need to take several naps a day, but I would probably benefit from one or two, especially when Taffy hasn’t been sleeping particularly well at night.
Lorelei is content with life’s little pleasures—food, companionship, comfortable surroundings. Yet she knows when to stick up for herself when she thinks something (like the vacuum cleaner) is out of place. She strikes a good balance, one I’m still seeking.
And of course she is beautiful and impeccably groomed.
I’m sure I’ll get there SOMEDAY. In the meanwhile, our elderly cat is a source of joy, amusement, and inspiration.