Tuesday, January 7, 2014

As chosen by Rupert

It was only after Chloe sent the orchid flying off the bureau this Christmas that the penny finally dropped.

Not only had she managed to dislodge the recently-watered orchid (which proceeded to pour wet compost over the carpet), but she'd also sent an ornament crashing to the floor.

Rightly sensing that her actions might not increase her popularity, Chloe recalled a pressing engagement in the kitchen . . . an engagement which demanded her immediate attention.

This, I thought sadly, never happened with Rupert.  In all his eighteen years, he had never broken or dislodged anything.
Where Rupert was careful and agile, Chloe is carefree and clumsy.  In less than four years . . . but, no, it wouldn't be kind to Chloe to itemise all her breakages.

It was Rupert, I'm convinced, who chose Chloe as his successor.
From his vantage point in cat heaven, he spotted the Bengal kitten that was to be Chloe, and knew that she'd be the ideal candidate.  Utterly unlike him in every way, she would ensure that he was never forgotten!

Rupert chose Chloe because, whereas he had always been a serious and sensible young man, she was a beguiling, playful and utterly frivolous, little girl.

 Did Rupert try to manipulate me?  Never!
True, he was the undisputed boss in our partnership, but manipulation was not his style nor his inclination.  Rupert ruled with the gentle, loving, implacable authority of the leader of the pride.
You didn't argue with Rupert.

Rupert chose Chloe because, whilst accepting my authority in theory, she's a strong believer in fighting her corner!
With wide blue eyes gazing reproachfully into mine, she argues each morning that she's bored with free-range chicken . . . that no cat should be expected to eat the same breakfast every day . . . that dragging it out of her  bowl and scattering it all over the floor is exactly what a monotonous diet deserves.

To try telling her that Rupert never questioned his  food, which always remained tidily in his bowl, would be useless.
"More fool he!" would be Chloe's robust response . . .  adding that a conscientious and sustained hunger strike, resulting in your anxious Mum cheering up the dreary chicken with some tasty tuna, was far better tactics!

Could a cat argue with more persuasive charm?  I doubt it!
What's more, as Chloe thoroughly enjoys a battle of wills with her long-suffering Mum . . . rolling beguilingly on her back when she wants to call a truce . . .  such battles are a daily source of entertainment.

One of her favourite points of contention centres on the route we take on our walks.  Whereas Rupert would lead me with enjoyment and purpose in search of our common destination, for Chloe the very concept of a destination is a distraction.
She loves the detours, the deviations . . . everything that turns a walk into an unexpected adventure.

What complicates matters is the fact that she's constantly changing her mind.

To capricious Chloe, the route is always flexible . . . shall we go this way?  No, perhaps not today . . . what about that path for a change . . .?

Rupert chose Chloe because of her loving nature and exuberant sociability.
As a one-woman cat himself, he clearly thought that my friends would appreciate the novelty of meeting an extrovert who took boundless pleasure in being sociable.

He chose a cat who greets each visitor with delight and wide-eyed expectancy . . . repaying all offerings with extravagant gestures of gratitude, and treasuring her growing collection of toys.

But Rupert also chose Chloe because he loved me.
He wanted me to have another devoted, delightful companion.  Not a serious young man this time, but a beguiling, exasperating, utterly loveable small girl . . . a small girl who snuggles down lovingly beside me each night, and wakes me by means of an enthusiastic kissing session each morning.

Rupert knew what he was doing . . . thank you, Rupert!