Don't be fooled. Inside this thin coating of sweetness is a fiery core of total insanity.

Monday, December 2, 2013


My kitty Lightning passed away on Thanksgiving weekend. She inexplicably started eating less about 2 1/2 weeks ago, and after several visits to the vet, which included a couple of biopsies of a mass in her abdomen, it was determined that she probably had a lympho-sarcoma. In the span of 2 1/2 weeks she lost more than 2 pounds, which given that she started at 7.3, is a lot of weight. The day after Thanksgiving, she downed only a tiny bit of tuna water, and then refused all food and water. I tried to keep her going with broth in an eye dropper, but she finally passed on Sunday morning, after spending two days almost exclusively either beside me on the couch, or on my lap.

That was a rough two days for all of us.

She was a very sweet kitty, who lived more than 16 years (roughly the equivalent of an 84-year old human, according to charts I found on the web.). When she was a tiny kitten, she used to curl up inside my slipper to sleep, and when she got older and would no longer fit inside, she would curl up on top of it.

When she was young, she acted a bit like a puppy, always following us from room to room and jumping up on anything near us to get closer to our faces.  She loved to lie on the back of whatever chair or couch we were sitting on.

She couldn't resist an open door. Like a typical curious cat, she always had to find out what was on the other side (except if she knew it led outside). The lower cabinet doors in our kitchen in Massachusetts had no catches, and she had figured out how to open them. I often came into the room to find every one standing ajar, and her nowhere to be seen. Whenever I opened a closet or pantry door in our house I had to make sure she hadn't snuck inside before I closed it again.

If your hair was wet from a recent shower, she would set up shop nearby and groom you.

Here she is with Catfael, another much-loved and much-missed kitty

Lightning on the back of the couch, leaning on Nigel's head

She would sit on the couch just behind Nigel when he was at the kitchen table eating, often peering over his shoulder to see what he was chowing down on.

Lying on warm laundry fresh out of the dryer was always a big draw

She also liked crawling into or under clothing or blankets. Here she had managed to crawl into an arm of Nigel's pyjamas

Like many cats she loved boxes

Especially empty plant trays

Her meow was so soft you could barely hear it. She knew when it was time for me to get up from the computer in the evening and feed her, and would pace back and forth in front of the monitor.

Here she is peering at me accusingly from behind the printer

She survived a stressful couple of years when we first came here from Massachusetts where she grew up, including a long airplane flight from Boston to Seattle, and a second move from our rental house in North Seattle to the one where we live now.

She never went outside in Massachusetts, but when we moved here and had a fenced-in back yard, I used to let her out to explore. She never went far.

She and her "sibling" Magellan (not technically her sister, but we adopted both of them at the same time and at the same age -- about 8 weeks old -- from a shelter in Massachusetts).




I am so dreadfully sad. I'll miss her. She had a good life, but I thought I'd have longer.