After Dad died, I settled into his house for a time. It didn’t take long, however, to discover that his three-bedroom house with full basement was too big for a single person with an aversion to house cleaning and yard work.
I looked around and found a duplex that I could rent. I was hoping that my brother could come back to help go through Dad’s stuff, but he was busy, so he sent a friend of his to help with the packing.
I went through the house in the weeks prior to the move, looking at everything. I’ve discovered that the important things are the memories we have. The rest is just “stuff”. Sometimes we keep the “stuff” to help remind us of memories but, for the most part, if the memories are deep enough, we don’t really need the “stuff”.
The day of the move, cousins from Hoisington came over to help load up my things into a U-Haul truck and Rob’s friend and his family came to load up Rob’s things. We had one full house!! It was an extraordinary day and I can’t thank our friends enough for helping!
I got moved into my new place and started settling in. About a year after my move, I got a phone call from a friend of mine who was working for an oil company here in Great Bend. That company was getting ready to move to a new location outside of town, but they had been located next to a house that was home to a good-sized colony of feral cats. The employees of the oil company had been in the habit of feeding the cats and were worried about what would happen to them when the company moved. They were calling everyone they knew to see if anyone could accept one of these feral cats.
At this point, I already had two cats, Lizzie and Jessie, and didn’t think I needed another cat, but I was approached with a sad tale of a kitten who had had two litters at a very young age. Visions of human trafficking (only with cats) came to my brain and I decided that I could rescue one small cat from the perils of life on the streets.
I took a carrier over to my friend’s office to collect my new cat. There were a lot of cats outside the door but the one destined to be mine had been allowed inside the office so was more comfortable with people. She looks like a Russian Blue cat with a delicate triangular face, exotic gold eyes and short blue-gray fur. She’s a small-boned cat that answered to the name Pretty Mama.
I was introduced to her and we gabbed for a bit and then it was time to get her into the carrier to bring her home. I picked her up and was trying to convince her that she would enjoy her new home. She wasn’t too enthusiastic over the prospect and kept trying to get down. At one point, I was holding her upside down when I turned to thank the employees for letting me have her.
I got her home and let her out of the cage. I wasn’t fond of the name Pretty Mama because I have found that when I call my other cats in, I have to call fairly loudly. Pretty Mama is not a pretty name when you’re yelling it! I tried other names, but the new cat didn’t like any of them, so we compromised. I now yell for Lizzie, Jessie, and Mama when I want them to come in.
The three cats get along pretty well. They have each staked out their territory. Lizzie likes to hide under tables or in closets, Jessie likes to sleep under the piano or on the couch, and Mama likes the bed in my second bedroom. She’s the only one with her own bedroom, but she also enjoys sleeping on the back of the couch. I’m not certain but I think she likes it there so she can jump on Jessie!