Thumper: December 27, 2008 – August 3, 2019

Thumper's face

It has taken me a while to post this because it is such a hard thing to do. It was hard to look at her photos. Hard to think about all the good times we had together, and hard to deal with the fact that she’s no longer with us. It’s hard to type this because a public acknowledgment is so final.

We adopted Thumper in early 2009 in Singapore. Just over a year ago, Thumper was diagnosed with cancer. Saturday she lost her fight. The cancer had spread to her chest cavity and it was filling with fluid. She could no longer breathe well enough to move even two feet without collapsing and gasping for air. Watching her struggle and suffer and slowly die in front of us was incredibly painful and it was unfair to her to let her slowly suffocate to death.

On Saturday we took her to the vet to say goodbye. It was the hardest thing I’ve ever had to do. Making the choice and then physically doing it. Putting her in her carrier and walking out of our apartment on Saturday morning was a really bad experience. Holding her head while she took her last breath is something I’ll never forget. I’d honestly rather go back to Iraq in 2003. It was less painful and less stressful.

Thumper was a blessing on our lives and helped us both through some tough times and became the spark of joy that lit up our home. The apartment feels empty without her. The last few days have been very tough for us and for Dapper, Thumper’s sister. Dapper has known Thumper since Thumper was a kitten also. Only her nemesis, Cheesecake, seems pretty good about things since he’s 2nd favorite instead of 3rd favorite now. But seriously, he’s acting weird too. They both look for her. Sometimes we do too.

RIP Thumper. You will be missed. Thank you.

The Black Cat of Audubon Ave.

When my wife and I lived in Singapore, we saw cats walking around all the time. The locals call them “community cats.” That has a nice ring to it. It sounds a lot better than calling them “strays,” which implies that any cat not in a home is outside of its natural habitat. Cats can be friendly outside as well as inside and add character to a neighborhood, as long as they’re properly maintained, and from what I remember of Singapore, they were definitely well cared for. Fat little guys, always lounging on the void decks underneath the HDBs. =)

Black Cat on Audubon Ave 1

Anyway, I don’t want to get into that whole debate, really. I was just reminded of it a few days ago when I was walking down Audubon Avenue on my way home from the bakery and saw a black cat hanging out on the sidewalk. I don’t think this cat was really a stray, because she was just too fat and friendly, and she wasn’t scared of anyone. Maybe people around here just like cats. Who knows? Regardless, it brightened up my day.

When I reached down to pet her, she stuck her head up. Then she tried to play with my watch band and rolled over to swat at my hand. Very friendly cat! I hope someone is taking good care of her! She reminds me of my own black cat, Thumper, except she has a long tail. Thumper is from Singapore, so her tail is naturally short.