September Journey with Phyllis Buell

Syracuse Journal-Democrat

Old Dogs vs Young Cats!

It has been a year to the day since my cat Sugar came to live with me.

Oh, what a year of learning, love, smiles and frustration in one form or another that year has been.

Sugar is smart. Very smart. She is also very determined!

If a fly comes in my front door, it is not long for this world.

I don’t need a flyswatter. I have a four-legged one. There are times when I feel it would be easier if I just had a flyswatter like most people have.

Sugar is relentless. She doesn’t quit until the fly that had the audacity to enter her kingdom is dead!

It does not matter where that fly goes, Sugar is there too . . .

But there is another Sugar story fresh on my mind this morning.

It was predicted to storm last night. I watched what was going on in Omaha and thought I had better put Old Blue in the garage.

Mission accomplished. I thought everything was in order and Sugar and I went to bed. She sleeps on my shower chair and has the entire bathroom for her night time domain.

Sunday morning: I thought we had had some rain and a quick glance outside assured me we had not had a storm.

A few minutes later I walked into the kitchen and my heart stopped! The kitchen door was open. Rain water had run clear across the kitchen and Sugar was nowhere to be seen!

Let’s just say I probably broke an Olympic record for old ladies, when I ran across that kitchen – to heck with the water hazard - and out that door to the outside stair area.

Yes, there was Sugar! She looked at me like a defiant child. Her ears were back and her “body language” was letting me know she had no intentions of going back inside!

Despite the peaceful Sunday morning quiet, I yelled at her!

Then I remembered I was standing there, barefoot on a rain-soaked balcony - speaking very loudly, to a cat – in my nightgown!

I hoped everyone in the apartment complex was still sleeping. If they weren’t, I ‘m certain they had a very rude awakening.

I grabbed Sugar by the back of her neck, scrambled back over the wet Welcome mats and beat a hasty retreat into the kitchen.

Later, as I was mopping up the rain water with some bath towels, I thought how lucky I was considering my stupidity!

The door I thought was closed and locked must not have been quite latched. Apparently, l sleep much more soundly that I think I do, because I hadn’t heard a thing. The rain water was the only problem. Things could have been blown all around.

Sugar was simply doing what cats do. She had seized the moment to investigate her “new digs.” She is fully aware she has some new feline neighbors she hasn’t met and thought she would check them out.

Well, this old dog (me) will check things out a little better when storms are predicted. As far as the young cat goes, I think we may be headed for the “terrible two’s” as far as her behavior is concerned. Sugar isn’t “minding” any better than my own human kids did at times.

Phyllis Buell, September Journeys