Dim light creeps into the room as I silently slide out of the warm comfort of bed into the cool chill of morning. It is Sunday. A day I relish.
I tiptoe down the stairs and it is quiet, too quiet. Generally an insistent meowing and a lead to her food dish greets me as I open the door. But this morning, nothing. Our 19 year-old cat, Winnie, does not show her face. My mind immediately jumps to the conclusion that she has died during the night.
Reluctantly, I begin my search.
I am not a cat person. Not really. But she has been with us a very long time. Since our youngest son wanted a cat when he was 8. We relented and got him one, never thinking she would live so long.
Winnie won me over in her early years when we remodeled the house. The attic was full of bats and as we covered up escape routes, they began appearing in the main part of the house. She was incredible, once leaping and catching a bat in mid-air as it flew down the stairs (there are witnesses).
Winnie has kept us rodent free since then, although she plays with her "food" and that has led to some memorable moments.
I keep looking through the nooks and crannies of our old house, being sure to check favorite spots. And there she sits, on the heat vent tucked between the love seat and end table. This is a favorite spot to sit on cold days when Chloe is around. Winnie looks at me, but doesn't meow, doesn't move.