14 December 2007

end of a line

For early clarification, Whitey is a cat, not a derogatory reference to anyone or anything.

My father writes:

Whitey’s been awfully sick. He can hardly stand, and his head is wobbling rhythmically back and forth like he has lost his equilibrium. It may be a cold or flu, or it may worse. All I know is, Wednesday night he didn’t struggle when I picked him up to bring him into the garage. Last night and this morning, he is still a little wobbly, but he is back to being touchy. That might be a good sign.

It worries me, though, because this description reminds me of what happened to Rocky right before she died. And that, too, was around the yuletide. I don't know how well I can deal with going home to that situation again.

And Whitey is the end of a line of cats that began with the initial adoption of a calico kitten in 1987 or 1988. Puff had Moppet (f), Rascal (m), Rocky (f), and Yellow Stone (f). And, much to our surprise, after being fixed, Moppet had Smoky (m) and Whitey (m).

Puff died and Moppet and Rascal vanished in Pennsylvania. When we moved to NC, Yellow Stone and Smoky vanished (maybe lost, maybe taken). They were all outdoor cats, so it wasn't impossible that they'd decided to move on, or that somebody else had decided they wanted to keep them.

That left Rocky and Whitey.

Rocky died while I was visiting my folks, on winter break from BU. And now Whitey is our little old man.

I don't know. I always thought of Whitey and Smoky as the young ones, but ... he's pretty old now. Sixteen or seventeen, I think. I feel bad for my parents though. I only hear or read about his condition; they have to watch him slowly fall apart.

It's a day for spiked hot chocolate.

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