30 August 2008


Was done in ONS, a big offshore oil conference in Stavanger, still feeling a bit under the weather but we had a big party for the whole company on a yacht in the harbour. It was really good to see everyone relaxing and having a good time. They are a great bunch of people – we are lucky to have put such a great team together.

I called Katharine pretty late on and she told me that she had some very sad news. Florence had been run over. I was a bit pissed but that sobered me up, I was shell shocked. We don’t even live near the road, I always thought that they would be safe from the traffic, but apparently not. My neighbour, Hege had found her and called Katharine who had to deal with it all. Apparently Hege had been really sweet, she’s a lovely lady, but it doesn’t change the fact that little Flo has gone.

We got the two cats as kittens about two and a half years ago. I was not so keen on having them but Katharine made me. Once we got them I was a total convert, they were so adorable that it was impossible not to love them. At first they were almost identical except for the bushy white tip of Lola’s tail. We were originally told they were boys and they almost got called Erik and Ernie, but we quickly noticed that they were lacking certain bits and they became Florence and Lola – Flo and Lo.

As they grew up they became very different, both in personality and in appearance. Lola grew to one and a half times the size of Flo and has always been very confident, demanding attention all the time, stomping around and behaving live a total tart when anyone came to the house. Lola has the looks and the attitude but she is also not especially bright. Flo was smaller and definatly more reserved. She loved to get attention, but on her terms. She would be aloof for days then suddenly just demand some lovin, she adored having the top of her head and then her chin tickled alternately. She was much smarter than Lola and was always the one that figured things out first, like the catflap and the ladder that replaced the stairs for a while. Flo was also the hunter, bringing in birds and mice. Generally as presents that you didn’t really want. They were a great double act and super company when ever I was in the house on my own.

And now Flo has gone. Its very sad! We were sat up last night talking about her and almost waiting for the clap flap to clatter and for her to skit into the room and demand attention. When I went to bed last night there was a space at the bottom of the mattress that was hers but as I turned in my sleep, the movement of my feet were not restricted by a small body taking up a large part of the duvet. Sad as it is we have to accept that she is gone and keep it in context. People suffer far greater losses everyday and many animals are abused and tortured so that they never know any love, only fear and brutality throughout their lives. We know that she had a nice life. She made us happy and we loved her very much.

I am not a spiritual person, not at all, but at times like this it’s hard to not to want to say “she’s gone to a better place” or something similar. But the reality is that she has just gone. Her legacy is the memories we have, the way she made us laugh, the feelings we have for her and the way in which she enriched our lives. Her passing also emphasizes that old adage “live everyday as if its your last” because you really have no idea what is around the corner or what will happen tomorrow.

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