Mom is back—and just in the nick of time. Although there was a flurry of cleaning and the washer and dryer were going overtime before her arrival, there is something … missing when she is not here. You could say Mom is the heart of our family.
After Mom settled back in, she came into the kitchen and looked at me as I rested in my Louis Vuitton dog bed and said, “Marcy Mary, how about a little walk? Just you and me.” While I wanted to be with Mom, I had already done my allotted five walks, but she looked so eager I could not disappoint her.
We started off at a brisk trot … when I started to feel a burning sensation on the right front pad of my foot. I tried to ignore it, but as the pain began to escalate, I started to limp. Mom was right on it. She picked me up and examined my paw. “Marcy, your pad is cracked and bleeding. And look at the state of your nails! They are all worn down. We will have to take care of this.” And with a determined look on her face, we returned home.
I won’t go into details, but after questioning the family, Mom determined that there had been too many walkies for the excellent family dog—and the family needed an alternative. The means to the alternative arrived a few days later via the mailman. Mom opened the package, took out the contents, and said, “Now where are those cats …”
I followed her downstairs, where the girls were curled up with Rex and Kotty, watching Frozen 2 for the thirtieth time. “There you all are. Look, my precious felines, what I bought for you.” She held up two very small harnesses with matching leashes. “I just have to see if these harnesses fit.” She scooped Kotty off the couch and proceeded to try to loop a pink rhinestone embellished harness over Kotty’s head.
I watched with great interest as Kotty began to gyrate and yet remain as limp as over-boiled spaghetti, but I knew who would win this contest: Mom always won. Even when we would hide, she would find us.
But then it looked as though Kotty were getting the upper hand. “Kotty,” Mom said through gritted teeth. By then the leash was entwined around mom’s wrist, looped around Kotty’s hind leg, back around Mom’s elbow, then a few more spins around Kotty’s midsection.
Sighing with exasperation, Mom sat on the couch, firmly holding Kotty. Off came the leash, which I thought was a pretty good idea. Then, clutching Kotty with her left hand, she slipped the harness over Kotty’s head, put her on the floor, slipped one foot, then the other through the openings, and secured the buckle. She set Kotty on the floor saying, “There! See? That wasn’t so bad, was it?”
Have I ever mentioned Kotty’s eyeball gymnastics? Well, that day she reached new levels of bizarreness. Her eyes were reeling around in opposite directions, and I swear I saw little flames darting from her icy-blue pupils. Her ears were flat and at right angles to her head, and her lips were pulled back, displaying her yellow, nasty, pointy, tiny teeth. She was standing so stiff and still she looked like a taxidermist had paid her a visit. This was a truly horrible sight.
Obviously, Mom didn’t notice because she kept chattering. “Now where has Rex gone?” I could see Rex’s very long, very bushy tail peeking out from behind Dad’s recliner. I looked at Kotty, but clearly she was not thinking of anyone but herself. Looking at me, she spat out, “Don’t say a word, Marcy Mary!”
By then Mom had spotted Rex’s tail. “Oh, there you are, Rexy.” She had him in seconds, and unlike Kotty, he just played dead.
“Rexy, you are so easy,” Mom said as she engaged the clasp, but she spoke too soon. Rex gave a double twist and landed on Mom’s feet, writhing and crying. Mom quickly unlatched the harness and in a distressed voice said, Oh, Rexy, I am so sorry!”
I looked at the clasp, which was stuffed with “Rexy” fur—and, I think, a bit of skin. “I need to loosen this,” Mom said. In a few seconds, the harness was expanded. “Really, Rex, this is as large as I can make it, and I don’t think this is all fur,” she said as her fingers probed Rex’s luxuriant fur.
My eyes swiveled to Rex’s face, and I saw the horror because we both knew what was coming next. “I think we are going to have to cut back on all those Cutie Kitty treats,” Mom declared, clicking the clasp into place.
Then, turning to my human sisters, Mom said, “All right, girls, turn off the video and pick up your cats. We are all going on a walk.”
Once the door closed, I got to work on the bandage on my paw …