PLUNK GENEALOGY -- see "Family" label on this blog and/or write Mike at

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Kitty Scarlett --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- May 18, 1991 - August 13, 2009

My sweet little friend, Kitty Scarlett, passed away this morning as I held her and Mike held me. Scarlett came into my life 18 years ago as a tiny, scraggly-haired shelter kitten. With time and care, she emerged as an extremely smart, loving and beautiful cat.

Scarlett and I made four near-cross-country moves from Little Rock to California, back to Menphis, back to California, and finally back to the Memphis area. True to her nature, she was a calm, patient traveller – but always tried to hide under the motel bed to keep from being put back in the car. We were companions through numerable ups and downs. I have many funny and tender memories of our time together. After Mike and I buried her this evening, we sat on the patio sharing reminiscences of the little lady. Probably her funniest story you can find in blog archives – Kitty Scarlett and the Bag Monster. Here is the sweetest story of Scarlett that speaks to the heart of my little fur person.

About three and a half years ago, I had some nasty surgery on my right eye. The recovery called for eight weeks face down. That means nose to the sheets. Prior to surgery, Mike and I found online a foam wedge designed for such face-down periods. It had a hole in which to rest one’s face and air holes around the sides. Mike says that I was pretty out of it for the first couple of weeks. I later asked him how Scarlett reacted to all of that, and he couldn’t remember seeing her although her food, water and essentials were provided.

After I was in less pain and mentally back in the world, I recall the afternoon when I was lying in bed, head in the foam wedge, listening to a book on cd when I heard Scarlett jump up on the foot of the bed. I could feel her sit down and pause, obviously assessing a situation unfamiliar to her. She certainly knew that unusual things were going on in the house and that they had to do with me.

After her pause, she stepped over between my calves and once again sat, no doubt deciding how to proceed. She then walked up my backside onto my back and lay down, stretching from my waist to my left shoulder. She didn’t weigh much, but she was warm and it felt good. She then stretched her right forearm over my shoulder and forward toward my chin. I’ve seen her in that position so I know that she crossed her left paw over her right and lay her head on her right arm.

I could feel her warm, steady kitty breath along my jaw. Because her head was slightly below my left ear, I could hear her very soft purring. I don’t know how long we lay like that, but I know that we both dozed off and on and enjoyed the presence of each other. I am also certain that she was there as much to give comfort as to receive it. It was the most tender moment I’ve ever had with a loving pet.

I cut a flower from one of my rose bushes tonight and placed it on her grave. I will miss her dearly.


Brooke D. said...

Oh, Miss Diane,
I am so sorry to hear of Scarlett's passing. The loss of a beloved pet and companion is great. I can only imagine your grief and hope that her memories will always bring you joy.
BIG hugs,

Marcy said...

Oh Auntie D.... I am so sorry...
I'll miss precious Scarlett too. sad... :(

Lacy said...

I am so sorry, Diane. I have to hold back my own tears at the moment, reading your story. It's such a hard thing to lose a loved one.

Scarlett said...

Thank you, ladies. I appreciate the support. Mike and I are both trying to adjust to her absence.

SMILE said...

I am so very sorry, D. All my love to you my friend.