Rita Marley Arnold - R.I.P.
Things you may not know about Marley:
She was conceived in Johnson City, Tennessee.
Not an easy cat, she had a small yet devoted following.
Marley was the kind of cat that gave cats a bad name, but only if you didn't know how to handle her. Those that truly knew her, loved her.
She would come running from anywhere in the neighborhood when we sounded our little Tibetan prayer chimes.
She was a Buddhist.
She liked to follow us around the house and the neighborhood. She'd let you get ahead, then come bounding after you, chirping and trilling little happy sounds.
She was slinky.
A born hunter, she brought home lizards, birds, and squirrels. She once delivered a slug to my sister-in-law's feet, earning her the nick-name Slug Mouth.
I once saw her kick a four foot snake's ass (where is the ass on a four foot snake, you ask? About three and a half feet down from the mouth, I tell you)
But her favorite prey was a foot under a blanket.
She pooped in the litter box but peed next to it.
She respected and obeyed our older, tougher but sweeter male cat (Repo) and despised our younger, bigger, softer and dumber male cat (Jack)
She outlasted both of them.
She loved to sit on your lap, but you pet her at your own risk. She'd enjoy it until she HATED it and then she bit you, hard.
She was very photogenic.
She liked being manhandled about the neck. A good hard grab and tug on the extra scruff there and she was yours for life.
She would lick the gravy off her wet food then walk away.
When we had three cats she slept between my knees. When she was an only cat she slept under my left arm.
She HATED closed doors and would scratch at one for hours.
She was really good at getting her way.
She always wanted to be in the same room with us, even if just to ignore us. Whenever we had a party she was the only cat who'd hang around with our guests. Even if it was to bare her fangs and scare the crap out of them.
If we went away she would shred the toilet paper to punish us.
She was fearless.
After her salad days were long gone she developed a saggy belly that made her look perpetually pregnant. She refused to acknowledge this and if you dared to touch it she'd destroy your hand before you could say 'lay off the whiskas.'
I never once saw her lick herself anyplace inappropriate.
She liked to lay on my tummy and stretch her front legs out till her paws rested on my lips. I always felt like she was telling me to shut up.
She went NUTS for the sound of a tin whistle.
When we left Florida, Clayton the Amazing worked hard to find Marley the right new home.
He was kind enough to take her when we moved, then find her another home when his didn't work out, then find her yet ANOTHER home when she didn't fit into the second one. (I told you she was difficult)
He kept us posted on how she was doing and how much she was adored by her new people. Then we got this email last week:
I'm sorry to report that Marley is no longer with us.
She died last Thursday, August 28th.
Beth started crying while she was telling me and said she was inconsolable all weekend. They loved her very much. Believe me when I say she had a pampered existence for the final part of her life. Marley had fallen in love with Beth's husband, Horus, and he with her. Beth was always telling me stories of how jealous she was of the fact that Marley would follow him around and jump in his lap and snuggle in with him at night. I'm sorry it took a few months to get her settled in an environment that was good for her, but at least her last year was without other cats and with people that loved her.
I hate telling you but I thought you would want to know.
I hereby nominate Clayton for the Best Friend Ever Award.