Thursday, October 25, 2007

(tigger) Tucker

April 1996-October 2007

Tucker was rescued from abusive children long ago when we lived in Austin. He was just a kitten when we found out he was being used as target practice for teenaged kids with rocks; being thrown into the air to see if he would really land on his feet; and other sordid things I won't mention.

Before all of that, I was at the pool and he came around all fluffy and full of kitten goodness. I looked around and saw no one was with him or calling for him so I took him home. Soon one of the neighborhood kids came to claim the kitten and sadly we gave him back.

Not long after word got back to us of the antics I described above. Again, I snatched the kitten when I saw him and took him home. We had him for several weeks before he was spotted again by the neighborhood kid. This time we gave him back with the expicit terms of "if we see him again we keep him."

I told a neighbor about the situation. She lived not far from the kids and had a better view of their place (we lived in a townhouse adjacent to apartments--habitrail living at its finest.) One evening I received the call, "I've got him." Under the cloak of darkness the exchange was made--his freedom from abuse!!

In order to keep him (as we already had two cats in a tiny townhome--not to mention 2 small kids!) I offered him up to Brent to name. As his heritage was obviously tabby, his were unique markings. Instead of stripes going around him, his were in bulls-eye patterns on both sides. White sox and boots, and the biggest, fluffiest tail ever. tigger Tucker, aka Tucker, was born.

Tucker lived a very full life filled with children, other cats, dogs, sunshine... all the things that make live wonderful.

One story. Early one morning I called the cats in for breakfast. In good weather, they would choose to stay in or out. He stayed out that night. I called and called getting a little more frantic as time passed and no Tucker. Finally, I saw him come down the driveway.

Our next door neighbors had a pool. On warm summer nights you could walk out the back door and hear the frogs and toads talking amongst themselves. Some days would find out neighbor pulling yards and yards of frog eggs from the pool--something that was always a little creepy to see.

Tucker was coming down the driveway with a frog in his mouth head first, arms dangling on either side of his mouth, legs hanging down. I screamed for him to drop the frog and he stopped and looked for an escape. I ran towards him, juked him left, then right, and in all of his wisdom, he dropped the frog.

What a lovely frog too--a Leopard frog. Long, lean back legs built for swimming; gorgeous dark green and pine green stripes for camouflage. In my rubber gardening clogs, I hopped the neighbor's 4' fence (frog in my hands!!) and slunk through his yard to his pool. I slipped the frog back into the water and watched him glide to the bottom.... such grace.

There are a thousand times ten stories that illustrate Tucker's life. He is sorely missed by the entire famiy. Even Rosie (the large, raccoon sized calico cat) when she thinks about it.

Thursday, October 11, 2007