We opened the sympathy card Ellen had dropped off for us… and I thought I would share her comments with you (we’re all family here, right? trust me, we are):
When you first moved here, you spoke of taking Pan out at nite so she could memorize the stars &always find her way home. Now she can be a star & always find her way home to your hearts and to your memories.
Thanks for remembering, Ellen.
Yep, that’s what I did each morning when I went outside to pick up the papers @ zero-dark-thirty and Pan wanted to join me: I would cradle her in my arms with her front paws hanging over my right arm, rear legs and feet tucked in to my left hand, down by my left rib cage, and when we passed the tree and could see the stars, I would say, “Remember, this is where you live. If you ever get lost, you can find your way home by looking up to the stars.” In fact, that’s what I did every morning after Dr. Ueno diagnosed her situation. We both enjoyed the quiet time together, smelling the fresh blossoms on the trees and shrubs and watching the moon and stars together… cheek-to-jowl. Just us TwoBigCats in the pre-dawn morning… one of us saying goodbye, the other making sure she had her bearings fixed in her mind.
And here’s how I wrote about it almost 8 years ago when I began The Legend of the Two Big Cats:
“As you may know, all cats have nine lives. Pan is in her 7th and in reaching this point in life, she’s learned to pretty quickly tell the good from bad and the wise from the foolish. In the process, Pan has become very wise & patient creature, able to deal with many different and difficult situations. Given her late stage life, Pandora has developed the unique ability to communicate some of her knowledge to most animals and, from time to time, even humans and, in doing so, has become a good mentor to many creatures. At this point in her life, Pan is a master of purr-trances and uses them at will so that she can go on “cat missions”. (Pandora will eventually acquire the ability to morph from cat to human at various times… when this ability first manifests itself, she’s never quite sure why or how it happens, but eventually learns to control it to begin using it to accomplish her (and others) benevolent goals.) Pan’s favorite toy is “Maroon Mouse” and she often brings it to GrandpaCat to share with him and to entice him to play with her.