When Mouse and Bro first came to us, they lived here. Alone.
Mouse’s real name is Boston, and Bro is Duncan. They lived in a storage shed with a little cat door. After school, we would race out here to feed them and be with them. They were the first permanent inhabitants of the little estate here. Knowing more about birds now, I wonder how that decision could have been made.
Mouse really does look like a mouse. We get them to compare to her from time to time in the pool skimmer.
Mouse and Bro are sixteen years old now. They are slowing down. Mouse was diagnosed with early renal failure well over a year ago, but is doing just fine.
She was involved in a car accident many many years ago, and I used to think about her future. Figured she would have arthritis because of it, and the damage the event did to the end of her spine. She is my soul mate as we both have whacky spines near their ends. With both of us, the spines seem to be seeking their polar opposites, bending at their very tips.
She is on my lap now. This is what I see. She would be so embarrassed to be seen in this position as “lap kitty”, this former amazon woman, but there you go. It happens.
When Mouse and Bro were only one or two, we went to Florida for four days at Thanksgiving. An acquaintance down the road offered to put kibble in their shed, which she did. She also hit Mouse in her car out on the two lane highway. She didn’t know it was Mouse, it was just a kitty. And she hit Mouse the first day we were gone. In her defense, Mouse probably ran out in front of her. No one intends to hit a kitty.
We arrived home with her saying she only saw one kitty the whole long weekend. We walked up and down our long driveway calling and calling. After a while, Mouse somehow appeared at the pool like an apparition, dragging her back end, trying to get to the water. She had not been grooming herself, and Bro spit at her. He didn’t recognize her.
We realized that she had been laying in the woods waiting for us for four days. I was overwhelmed at her life spirit and her strength. There was no blood, just the obvious effect of the crash, she could not walk, could not jump. I carried her in a towel for days. It was then that we truly bonded, and we have been this way ever since.
There was nothing to do as a result of the accident, the vet said, just let the interior armature heal.
Mouse learned. Veteran car traveler, she is always suspicious of Highway 4. She remembers what happened there. She sticks closer in her wandering. I learned as well. I documented the event in my work, as was my creative effort back then. This was before digital photography. Must have a slide of the piece somewhere, but where?
Sold my little homage to the spirit of Mouse in Atlanta to the wife of the Home Depot guy: Arthur Blank. At first she was interested in another piece, but when she heard the story about Mouse, that was the piece she took home.