It was four days before Christmas, the day before our family vacation trip to Kuching, ironically a city named as cat in the Malay language that my pet cat Casper has gone missing.
He has not been eating well before his disappearance, having had some diarrhea and loose stool. He must have eaten something incompatible with his stomach during one of his adventurous romp in the house backyard and outdoors. He was quite a hunter able to catch many insects, roaches, lizards and rats and any other creature that arouse his curiosity. But his favourite prey has always been the lizard. Despite the fact that some lizards were out of his reach high up on the wall, he manages to catch them somehow.
His climbing prowess I should say is one of the best amongst all the cats I have come across, not only able to climb up high on my backyard kitchen metal grill, but his ability to climb down when cats abilities are not made for downward climbing of any kind is short of remarkable and interesting to watch him do it.
So I curfew him and blocked his access to the outdoor backyard and see whether his appetite might recover a bit before I let him out again. The next day while Lena was carrying some boxes to her car, Casper could not stand being cooped up in the house anymore and decided to make a daring dash through the front door for the great outdoors! And that was the last we could see of him.
Casper has always insisted on his way, even where certain parts of my house where I have restricted his access to minimize the dirt and possibly the spreading of fleas around the house. Lena’s skin is rather sensitive and there were many marks and rashes on my wife’s skin evident of flea bites. Still Casper gets to run around the house when we were around, he enjoying our company and we like his intruding presence in the house.
Many a times when we have to exclude him from our bedroom, he will make meowing sounds requesting us to let him in. But to no avail do we let him in while we have our night’s rest. Still we are well rewarded with his morning calls, and he just wants to be close to us by sleeping against our bedroom door.
During the times when I am in front of my computer screen doing some work, Casper will just plonk himself between me and the computer keyboard. As though saying, “Concentrate on me and not on that boring screen!” He was in my way alright but it still felt good to have him lying down snoozing on my desk, with his head sometimes resting on my forearm, while I try to circumnavigate around him to use my mouse and keyboard. Lena said, “He just so sticky to you!”
Yeah, he was really sticky and we all really love him for his behaviour. But I guess we are going to miss him now that he has lost himself. He never failed to announce himself and says, “I’m back!” whenever he returns from his outdoor romp.
Our return from Kuching vacation trip was not quite the same without Casper greeting us when we came back and asking us how was the trip and messing around with our souvenirs and playing with the souvenir wrappers. While we were away in Kuching, I had ask my brother Jonn to feed Casper, but his visits was now to check whether Casper has return. Every night I would check with him, but the answer was not hopeful. Oh where Casper could have gone to?
I walked around the neighbourhood with my torch light after unpacking our stuff from the Kuching trip. I saw Casper’s best friend Cika and he looks rather lonely without Casper. I looked at some possible place where Casper might end up, but it was already four days ago that his has gone MIA.
I resigned to the fact that Casper is indeed gone and the chances of finding him would be slim having no idea where he could have gone and what trouble he may have encountered.
Lena cried and missed Casper’s presence despite her rashes from the flea bites. As do I, and we love him dearly so even though he was mischievous. Never again will he give me a playful bite when he insists he wants something. Never again will I be able to spar with him and Lena will asked, “What are you guys doing?” Never again will we hear his announcement when he returns. We are hoping to hear it anytime soon but guess it will never be.
Lena and I prayed to God that He will look after you well. So long my good companion cat, we bid you safe journey wherever you are.
Casper the Cat
23-July-2005 to 21-Dec-2006