Thursday, September 24, 2009

Vivani's Day

We adopted Vivani Catpants five years ago today, well, last week (Sept 24) since I forgot to post this.

Vivani her first day at Moderate Shangra-la, our house in Oaxaca, back in 2004. Look how short her fur is! We of couse had no idea of her age, but she was old enough to eat regular cat food, and didn't try to nurse, so I'd guess 8 or 9 weeks old. Oaxaca cats are so small compared to American ones, it's hard for me to tell, but her demeanor and robust health made me think she was high up in her litter pecking order, so I chose 8 weeks old on her adoption day.

Signs reading "Se regalos gatitos" (We gift you kittens!) are about as common as tortillarias, so I'm not surprised that we ended up with a gift of our own—especially after the passing of the iconoclastic Miss Izzy Vasquez.

And so a new kitten. Greg picked her name, which means "dawn" in Zapotec. I can't remember where Catpants, her last name, came from, especially since when it came to us she was practically pantsless. But however it came to us, it certainly fits as an appropriate surname. It even sounds good in Spanish: Gatapantalones!

Flash-forward to this spring, and Vivani sporting her full coat. Vivi isn't really a morning person...after we read the paper, and she's checked in at the Cat Club on those mornings when they meet, she heads back into the bedroom and goes back to sleep. Preferably with the curtains still drawn, but if those oblivious humans open them anyway, she can make do.

Vivani's palate has gotten bolder as she's gotten older; recently we discovered her new-found appreciation for mochi, a Japanese sweet-rice-and-red-bean treat. She also enjoys corn chips and smoked seafood. When it comes to actual for-cats cat food, however, her tastes are simple: kibble and cheap canned tuna!

Vivani enjoys the garden. Gardening is a favorite activity. If I'm out there, so is she (and Gina). She would enjoy the backyard even more if it did not contain 1) neighborhood cats, or 2) those scary poultry we insist on keeping. I can't blame her; I'd be nervous being rushed by a 150-lb flock of birds.

I have a saying, "It's hard to be small." And when I see a toddler or small child having a tough time with something, I think of that. (And yeah, I'd say it's a riff on "It's a hard world for the small things," H.I.'s line from "Raising Arizona.") And after five years of living with Vivani, the world's whiniest cat, I generally think of it now as "It's hard to be Vivi."

Really, though, it's tough to be so cute and extra-fluffy. I should have a little sympathy.

Happy Vivani Day, kitten!

1 comment:

Esther Garvi said...

What a darling! I still miss my Nerfertiti, even though I only had her for a few weeks before the dog killed her. I've never been an official cat person (just an all-kinds-of-animal person) but I'd love to adopt a cat one day.