Before the day’s commotion begins I like to rise ahead of the sun and either soak under the stars in the hot tub or spend quiet moments in a chair in mindful contemplation.
Don’t get too impressed with this early riser routine of mine. It’s a reluctant pleasure.
Today’s late winter morning, in the 5 a.m. neighborhood, and the day after some serious gardening, a hot tub soak sounded right. Except for one thing–my soon-to-be celebrity cat had tucked his muscular 15-pound body into my side sometime after midnight.
I made the first stir of arising. The cat, named Mouser, pushed his warm self closer to my side. The winter night air chilled the bedroom. So burrowing deeper into the fluffy and warm goose down quilt seduced me into another five minutes of bedtime lollygagging. Mouser’s boisterous purr spoke directly to my lazy bone. And he showed no intent of leaving the goose down nest. I succumbed to his will. After all, Mouser strides the path of national fame.
Some back story first. Writer Catherine Ryan Hyde, got wind of Mouser’s unique tale and asked if I’d send her some information for her blog. I did. Mouser’s first national mention came out last summer in More Kitty: Mouser the Hero.
Mouser’s story. Hal Abrams smelled a good one for his national radio broadcast.
This Saturday, March 3, Mouser makes his national radio debut. (Visit http://AnimalRadio.com)
Besides my Top Chef cheftestant daughter, Dakota, now I have another celeb in the family–himself, the cancer smelling, rat killing, and bird stalking cat, Mouser.
Cancer smelling? Yes, Mouser probably smells cancer. His story is how he would not leave my left breast alone. After one night of pushing into it (making muffins) he pushed so hard that I woke up in a sweat from the pain deep inside my breast. My forefingers followed his paw path and pushed into my breast until I felt from where the pain came. It was a true “Oh Crap!” moment. I’m sure I uttered something bluer when I felt a hard lump that I can best describe as a piece of Good n’ Plenty candy. But it wasn’t candy, it was a malignant tumor.
After my lumpectomy, Mouser lost his obsession with my left breast. He took to snuggling next to me like he did this morning.
Two years later, when Mouser developed a new obsession– kneading into our golden retriever’s belly–we finally suspected something unique. At first the dog, Hank, protested. But Hank gave up and let the cat make muffins of his furry abdomen. (Of course, he did. He was a golden retriever, or a “What can I do for you today?” pooch). Four months later Hank’s vet found inoperable cancer in his stomach.
Mouser’s likely cancer smelling story stayed within the family and friend circle until last summer when word got out.
Today Mouser rules our lives. We don’t care. Whatever it takes.
Meanwhile, chef daughter, who coddles her two French bulldogs, took on a new cooking project that brings her even more press—an upscale menu for pooches visiting the W in Westwood. Our late Hank tops “Fido’s Kitchen” menu with “Hank’s Apple Crunch Cakes,” honey sweetened fresh and dried apple and quinoa. (The best item on the menu, though, is Stella’s Mutt’za’ Balls—organic chicken, free range eggs, and brown rice.)
I’m sure this would not amuse Mouser. He’s all about sushi in the bowl. After Mouser’s radio debut this Saturday (I spoke for him because his meow is sometimes a challenge to translate), I’d guess the sole wrapped up in the freezer will have his name on it. I’d also guess that he’ll take his new celebrity in stride just like my daughter. All in a day’s work.