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Keeping Me Company

by Pam Shirk, North Carolina, USA


When the kids were little, I could count on at least one of them deciding that I'd be lonely whenever Rob was gone anywhere for the army. These "business trips" were at least one week a month and were sometimes as long as a year. The kids have now decided that I'm no longer lonely when Daddy's gone and get embarrassed whenever I say anything about how they used to keep me company by crawling into my bed and kicking me all night long while they slept peacefully. I didn't know that kids snored until I had my own. Did I mention that they also kicked?

Well, Rob's on a field problem supporting another base in Louisiana for the month. I thought that I'd have a nice quiet peaceful time of it being able to watch my shows without Rob telling me to turn off that damned tv so that he can sleep, then turning on the CD player so that I can't. I thought that the kids would let me sleep without their assistance. I thought that they wouldn't climb into my bed and tear the bedding off by kicking, tossing and turning, and pulling it out.

Well the kids let me sleep alone, the human kids did. The feline kids/owners have decided that I'll be lonely while Daddy is gone and have moved into his side of the bed. Now this wouldn't be a problem, as they lived on his side of the bed the last time while he was in Korea, except that Merlin has become a fully integrated member of the family and wants his rights to the bed too. This means that four cats want the same spot.

Last night I fell asleep while watching CourtTV and dreamed about everyone in the school I work at believing this infomercial about some cream getting rid of wrinkles permanently and putting the infomercial into the curriculum as a core subject. This was not a good thing. I tossed and turned and felt something soft settle on my face.

They're attacking me with that nasty cream, I thought, fighting my way to the surface. An irritated QC stood beside me with her back arched and weighing about 50 pounds by the look of her. I soothed her down and went back to sleep, after turning off the offending infomercial. A short time later, I was awakened by cats yowling and hisspitting at each other. Merlin was chasing Tanada across me, over the bed and onto the highboy, where both of them think they own the cable box. Merlin rarely is ignorant enough to try to attack Tanada when she's up there as she has height as well as home court advantage. She rarely tries to attack him up there for the same reason. Usually, these things don't last long and I can go back to sleep. I dozed off to be awakened a few minutes later by the gruesome duo hissing at each other. I told them to cut it out and went to sleep, with QC snuggled up against me with her head beside mine on the pillow.

Did I ever mention that QC snores? She also kicks. Her head was right beside my ear and it took a while to get used to having a moderate buzz saw going off by my right ear. Tanada and Merlin had settled down to Tanada laying on the cable box and Merlin laying on the bed below her so that she couldn't get off without going past him. He was happy, a perfect kitty trap. She glared at him, and he smiled back. They were quiet, I could live with that.

Has anyone noticed that Berfert hasn't added his brand of merriment to our little group of bed mates? He was busy plotting his entrance. Berfert usually lands on the bed with the same force as a bowling ball. This time he didn't. The first time I knew he was on the bed was when the snoring QC abruptly stopped snoring, jumped up and tried to climb my head. As near as I can figure out, Berfert climbed on the bed, snuck up to QC and I and stuck his cold nose in a place even a lady cat doesn't mention. Merlin and Tanada were so impressed that they even forgot their feud long enough to stare admiringly at the cries and whimpers coming from the bed. QC wasn't too thrilled either.

Berfert walked over to Rob's side of the bed and lay down with his head on Rob's pillow and the rest of him tucked under the covers. His work was done and had gone exceedingly well.


Editor's note:

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