Happy Wednesday! Last week was National Pet Week (but really, what week isn’t for any of us with pets??) and we’re continuing our nine lives theme. So Wickeds, is there a situation in your life with your pet or a scene you’ve written in one of your books that really brings home the idea of having nine lives?
Edith/Maddie: Any rescue cat has to have used up one or two lives by the time they get to a loving home. My late Birdy, the model for the cat in the Country Store Mysteries, was found in a nest of newborn kittens by a construction worker who nearly ran over them. He rushed the kitties to the nearest shelter, and only Birdy survived. He was bottle fed and fostered by a caring woman named Fran, and I was the lucky beneficiary. Robbie Jordan doesn’t know where her Birdy had been before he found her, but he’s sure to have used up a life or two already.
Julie: Edith, what a great way to look at our rescues. In my books, Luna is rescued as a kitten by Delia and Lilly. Luna is based on my sister’s cat Luna, who was rescued by my niece while trick or treating fourteen years ago. In the series, Max lived a full life with his previous owner, but was abandoned and rescued by Lilly. Both cats have used up a couple of lives, but will have wonderful long lives in Windward. In my personal life, I have two rescues. I suspect Fred and Ginger used up several lives before they came to me, but we’re all settled now.
Barb: When we moved from Newton, MA to Somerville, MA our new house was gut-renovated. As is so often the case, there was a punch list when we moved in. Our daughter, home from college, returned from her summer job to discover our cocker spaniel, MacKenzie, was missing. Sure enough, a workman had left an obscure door ajar–and MacKenzie had found it. There followed A Night. It was pouring rain and driving wind. I said it was like The Tempest. We were all out searching the neighborhood, calling his name. The police suggested calling Public Works to see if they’d picked up his body. The next day at work I got a call. The MSPCA had tracked MacKenzie’s chip and found me. He had run into a lovely man walking his dog just minutes after the big escape and spent the night warm, dry, fed, and playing with his new friend, while we roamed the streets until all hours. MacKenzie didn’t lose a life that night, but the rest of us did.
Liz: Omg, Barb. I can’t even imagine. Totally agree that our rescues have used up a few lives on their way to us. One of my original kitty rescues really stands out for me as an example. Ferris the cat showed up at the rescued league where I was volunteering. He’d been found living on the streets, eating out of trash cans and hiding in people’s garages to survive. He had a big scar on his back suggesting that something bad had happened to him along the way. When he was picked up by someone, he was, unfortunately, brought to a kill shelter and they had him on the euthanasia list. Luckily, someone told someone affiliated with our rescued, and he was saved–again. Then he got to our shelter and I decided to adopt him, but the shelter had to shut down due to a virus breakout among the cats so he had to stay there an extra month. By the time I brought him home, he was super grateful…actually, that’s a lie. He spent the first few weeks biting me, LOL. And even though he remained fresh for his entire life, that was just part of his appeal. He will always have a special place in my heart even though he’s been gone for 10 years now.
Jessie: Wow, Barb! That is just harrowing! I love reading everyone’s pet stories! In my first Beryl and Edwina novel, Crumpet, Edwina’s little terrier narrowly escapes being run over by a motorcar. I still cannot believe I did that to her! As for my own pets, for many years I had an African Grey parrot named Miss Kim. On the way to the ve my husband decided to transport her on his shoulder and she flew off and spent a couple of happy hours swooping through the trees before returning to his shoulder as if nothing at all had happened!
Readers, what about you? Any rescue stories (preferably with happy endings) to share? Leave us a comment below!