Now that the Crankee Yankee and I are retired, we have cultivated little rituals each day that remind us how nice it is not to rush to a job each day. Before I go to bed, I get the coffee maker set up so that all the Crankee Yankee needs to do the next morning is to press the button. Viola; minutes later, fresh hot coffee.
He is dozing before 8:00pm while I am just hitting my stride. It’s very late when I get to bed, and I make my nightly rounds before heading to bed myself. Later, all doors and windows checked, I settle in with a good book or program.
By then the house is quiet, all the cats have found their spots for the night. Nala, our one female, is usually tucked up on the Crankee Yankee’s pillow, purring into his ear. Pookie is snoozing behind one of the living room drapes, lying over the register, soaking up the heat.
Plumpy, one of our strays we adopted years ago, is stretched out in the rocking chair, snoring gently and whistling through his nose. The other adopted stray, Tinker, a large marmalade tabby, is flat on his back on the sofa purring in his sleep, his front paws twitching now and then as he chases mice in his dreams.
Bailey, who was originally my Mom’s and Dad’s cat, is nestled in my lap, eyelids at half-mast, rumbling quietly. Absently, I stroke his back before turning a page or reaching for my glass of water.
It’s funny about cats; some are cuddlers; some or not. Some prefer to approach you on their own terms, others don’t mind being picked up. Some will only come to you when they feel like it. Unlike dogs, who want to please, they have their own moods and agendas. They will not come when called, they don’t do tricks (unless is pleases them), they don’t obey commands, and they either like you or they don’t. To me, this is all part of their charm.
But as I sit there, cat in my lap, my mind going over the day and enjoying the peace and quiet of the house, I am grateful. This little slice of peace at the end of the day is a gift I treasure. I wonder what I have done in this life so far to merit such peace, happiness, grace and joy.
Some of my best thoughts and occasional prayers are born while I sit comfortably with a cat in my lap.