Thursday, March 12, 2009

I must talk about "Them"

Ever since I started the Liveaboard lifestyle, we have always had "Them". Way back in '90, we acquired two darling little Siamese kittens. Mogwai and Jellicle. Mogwai had large ears and smaller face than her half sister, and Jellicle had a very sweet personality but was longer and skinnier, with a rounder face.

They took over the house while I was on various cruises, and they were a challenge because of their aggressive begging and weird habits. For instance, Jellicle liked to push pens and pencils off of tables, hop down and pick them up for transport to the water bowl where she would drop these items into the water.

They really loved the Spousal Unit.

Mogwai loved my boots, and would drag my dogtags around the house. This was her in her later years, but old habits never leave;

When I got orders to London, we sent the kitties ahead for the six month quarantine (which is a barbaric relic from the past, which is a great way for jerks to make $4K for just babysitting cats and dogs in small cages. But the english reason that it keeps the UK free of rabies... Six weeks would be sensible but would make less money.) which I regret to this day.

After the six months were up, we lived in a flat for ten more months before acquiring Wildebeest III. We carried the cats down the dock while they cried and yowled at our horrible mistreatment of such Royal beings. We dropped them unceremoniously, they sniffed out their new home and moved right in.

They LOVED the boat! We had a separate head (bathroom) for their kitty litter, and they responded by never leaving the boat for walkabout or any other reason. It was like having a 43 foot cat perch with nooks and cranny's for hiding.

Them did not approve of sailing. Or motoring. When doing our sailing trips, they rode with us. We just would leave them behind if we were going to France, since another six months would be required at the quarantine. But they would go with us for weekend trips, usually cowering on or around Mom.

Big advantage in cold weather: They snuggled even more!

Even though Them really preferred their Mom, sometimes, Jellicle would actually sit with me, if I would sit still for more than a moment.

We would get entertained for hours, when the Cats would do stupid things like walk out to the cockpit, peek over the edge of the back cabin, and fall onto the bed. Over and over again, I called it "Raining Cats". This is a pre-raining cat photo.

When we prepared for the Atlantic crossing, we sent Them home to my Mom's, where they stayed for almost two years.

Them got to live aboard Wildebeest III again when we brought them home to Florida. Mogwai passed away a year after that, and her sister Jellicle went a year and a half later. I wonder if the quarantine had anything to do with it...

Mao is the boy cat who replaced Mogwai. We call him Mao, or Maogwai, since he is a clingy "M" class cat like Mogwai used to be. Him's picture is the little kitten picture on the left, giving me a what for, while Jellicle snoozes behind where Him sits. Mao really bothered and bugged the elderly Jellicle, but he picked up her best traits.

Him loves boats, too. Only problem is that Him thinks that all boats belong to Him. So he goes on walk-a-bouts, and makes the other boat owners angry. So he stays home with his two little girls, Mali and Saffy.

We never bring the three Meezers to the boat. Not worth the hassle, although Mao sniffs our clothing and bags, and gives a knowing look of "Why didn't you bring ME?"

Closing this out; We were right in having the original "Them" on the Wildebeest III, as they enhanced the experience of living aboard in a far away land. Today, "Them", Mao, Mali and Saffy, could become good boat cats, but the need is not there.

For the time being.

I still miss the original "Them".

1 comment:

Buck said...

TSMP and I discovered the price of love when we got our assignment to England back in the day. After MUCH gnashing and thrashing we decided our dog would be happier living on a friend's farm than spending six months in a kennel (and we would remain a couple of thousand bucks to the good). That was one of the hardest decisions we ever made, and I'm still not sure... to this day... we went the right way.

You're right: the law's an ass. Six weeks would be MORE than adequate.

Great pics!