Saturday, July 03, 2010

RIP, Cruiser

Our cat Tom Cruise (aka Cruiser, Cruzinsky, et al.) left this world on a dreary, wet July 1. He was 14. Plagued during his last year with deteriorating thyroid and kidneys, and apparent diabetes, he was tenderly euthanized by our neighborhood vet, and with a teary Cheri stroking him into his final sleep.

I dug a diminutive grave, then fetched Jay and Clarissa from down the street—neighbors who particularly knew and appreciated Cruiser (especially Jay, who for years now has graciously and appreciatively tended him when we’ve been out of town visiting children and grandchildren)—and they were kind enough to don their raincoats, bring flowers and liqueurs, stand out in the rain with us as we all buried and remembered Cruzinsky.

A sprig of rosemary and several orange nasturtium on the toweled bundle that was his graveclothes…gently shoveling wet dirt back into the grave…wet eyes, too…libations poured onto Cruiser’s grave as well as into us. And shared memories of Jessi’s choosing him in 1996, of his lordly explorations and exploitations of the neighboring houses. Of how one cannot pass a cat lounging on a couch or curled on a chair without touching it, like a talisman.

Our house has lost its talisman, its very local and vocal deity, who with the first morning light leaped onto the bed, and gently but inexorably head-butted whatever human extremity was available outside the covers to rouse us to his morning feeding. 

I will miss his beautiful tabby coat…his late-night companionship on the other end of the couch where in the midnight quiet I could hear him breathe, curled and content…the dimpled bedspread or cushion that indicated his favored nesting spot of the month…of his quick-trot up the driveway from God knows where, when we returned home after an extended absence.

It didn’t matter if he was happy to see us, or happy at the prospect of food, or just wanted in the house. On whatever terms Cruiser deigned to make himself available to me, I was grateful.


At 4:18 PM, Blogger Erio said...

Sorry for your loss Tim and Cheri... Great photos though for you to remember him by...

At 5:59 AM, Blogger rae ann said...

oh, i'm so sorry! cruiser was the welcoming committee for all who entered fenwick street from the south. he was loved and he will be missed.


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