Babe came into the world on my bed. (Talk about a soft life! ) She was Spotty’s one and only kitten. At first we called the kitten “Spotty Jr.” Then we decided the kitten needed a more dignified name. As my mother said, the kitten was Spotty’s babe, so the kitten was christened “Babe”.
Babe remained small in stature throughout her life, which lasted a long time. (Had she lived another week she would have been twenty years old.) People seeing her thought she was a kitten, but no, she was built small.
Babe made up for her small size by being large in determination and persistence. Because we lived then, as we do now, near a busy road, when Babe went outdoors she did so on a leash. She accepted this fact without much ado. She expressed her desire to go outside by putting her paw on the door knob and meowing, “Me-out, me-out”. (At least, that’s what it sounded like). So I put the leash on her and took her out, either to tie her up or to go for a walk with her.
Babe’s greatest feat while tied was jumping up and catching a hummingbird. I saw the last part of that incident, too late to help the unfortunate bird. To this day I wonder how Babe was able to get a hummingbird, as fast as it darts back and forth.
Babe and I spent many hours walking on the property. Together we explored the area. She poked her paw in a hole, felt around in the hole, and when nothing came out, moved on. She sharpened her claws on any available tree or bush; she stared at a bird, mouth open, tail swishing; she jumped at a butterfly. We could walk over the same space for days in a row and she was never bored. Everyday she saw something of interest. She taught me that you can find joy and excitement in little, everyday adventures without ever leaving home.
Babe lived life to the fullest, despite the restraints of being confined to a house or a leash. Since she couldn’t do anything about those restraints, she adjusted to them and enjoyed life anyway–which is another lesson I can use.
I lived with other cats before Babe came along. But she was the first one to teach me lessons about life.
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