Gary's Third Pottery Blog
Michael Pollan — 'A good pot holds memories.'
Gary's third pottery blog

WRITE TO ME! garyrith@yahoo.com Come see me! Gallery 41 Owego, NY Sept. 7. Cooperstown Art Association "Earth, Wind, Fire" New York Invitational August 22-Sept 20.. Six Mile Creek Winery Harvest Fest September 13. All material on this blog unless stated otherwise is copyright Gary Edward Rith 2013-2014

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Emily kitty had 99 lives: 1994-2011


(Emily and me a few months ago)
The vet comes over early in December and warns me that our 16 year old cat Emily is facing possible kidney disease.
In September 1994 we had just moved from Chicago to Massachusetts to teach, with our old cat Sammy and little tan dog Petey, (both of whom lived very long and wonderful lives.) In our first week at the new school, a nice woman named Leslie who was married to another teacher, asked if we wanted to ride along to pick up their dog at the kennel. We got the dog, but there was a stray kitten there too. The kennel owner said she had been abandoned there and was a sweetie but a wild thing too. She immediately charmed Leslie, then me, then Maude. She was one of those cats who just loved affection and was very affectionate herself. We decided to get our Sammy a kitten, which at first he was like "I never wanted a kitten!". He had said that when we got a dog too. Sammy lived to 16 and a half (1990-2007)and so did Emily.
I say she had 99 lives and its true. Sammy died of the Chinese tainted pet food thing and Emily was very sick then too. But she recovered. Then when we got Spike cat 3 years ago, he had a cold, she caught it and she almost died of pneumonia, but she came back.

My theory of kittens was put into action with her, as you see above. She was not a Ragdoll cat, but in my hands, she was a rag doll. I figured a young kitten would get used to being held and played with upside down, etc, and it was true, although she only let ME play with her like that.
For most of her life she was very chubby, as you see above. In the last 4 weeks all the extra weight came off. Her coat was always beautiful though. Saturday morning she seemed a little sick but she still had a huge appetite. Yesterday morning, suddenly she would not eat or drink anything, and with our other pets next to her, she fell asleep and did not wake up.

She had been named for the wife's sister Emily, who had gotten a cat at about the same time and named her Maude. Maude cat died recently too.

You are always amazed at how loving a small, free, stray cat can be. It is humbling--all they want is to be with YOU. How can you ever live up to that? I have worked at home most of Emily's life, so you know we spent nearly every hour of her life together. What a great friend.


(pic above and below from a week or 2 ago--Emily with Spike and modeling for a mug design)

(mug that I made and painted of Emily just last week)

(next 2 pictures--Emily with Penny and Buster and Spike yesterday)

33 comments:

Kari Weaver Hopkins said...

I'm so sorry about Emily's passing. Your pets are so much a part of your blogging, and I'll miss reading about her. :(

I love the photo and mug.

kcinnova said...

Gary, I'm so glad she spent her life with you, and that she could die peacefully at home where she was surrounded with love.
~KC :*(

Leslie Wales said...

Gary...Thank you for letting me know about your post, and Emily's passing. That was beautiful, especially how you celebrate the simple joy of adopting a stray. I am so sorry....I am remembering that trip, now, and agree with you that it was a shame to have not spent more time together...If you and Maude ever travel to Boston...:)
Keep blogging!

Di said...

Oh Gary ... I can see that she had such a lovely life but still, some Di tears here as I read through your post. She was lucky to have you guys.

Gary's third pottery blog said...

A real wake is a happy celebration of a life, and her cat and dog brothers and sister are having a wild party today. Its pretty funny, actually, they have been so quiet the last couple of days, and today they are whooping it up. Thanks for your comments, I really appreciate it :)

Lori Buff said...

I'm so sorry to hear about Emily. You and Maude must be very sad. The other animals can be such a comfort, especially when they remind us about celebrating life.

Fortune Cookies said...

Emily was a lucky kitty to get to live her life with Gary the Potter, and I'm certain she was fully aware of that :) I hope you take some comfort in that.
I'm so sorry for your loss.

TechnoBabe said...

Hi Gary, Emily sure lived a long time and you were blessed to have her in your family.

Kelly said...

What a beatiful tribute to a wonderful furry friend. I'm glad she went in peace sleeping with her friends. That made me cry. Love and hug to all. So sorry.

jim said...

amigo, so sorry to hear about emily, it is a testament to you as her friend that she lived such a long and full life

cm said...

Good-bye, Emily-cat.

k.a. barnes said...

All said, she had a wonderful kitty life with wonderful people who understood that all our pets really want is US and appreciated that. Cheers to a rollicking kitty wake for Emily Kitty.

Cheri @ Blog This Mom!® said...

Oh, Gary and Maude, I'm so sorry for your loss.

Lou said...

oh Gary, I'm so sorry to hear about poor Emily, what a beautiful little girl, always loved seeing her pictures. She was very lucky to have you, so very lucky. Love and hugs, x

tonya lynn said...

I'm so glad that y'all found Emily and Emily found y'all and was able to live a full life of joy.

annie said...

So sorry to hear of the passing of dear Emily. I believe you other furry kids, know when a passing is going to occur and show it in their actions. There being back to normal today, shows it is so. Although your Emily may not be here anymore, she will live forever in your heart. I am lighting a candle for your sweet kitty.

Knight said...

She was a lucky cat to have you and Maude as family.

Jay said...

Awww ... R.I.P. Emily

She was a great kitty and an awesome friend.

Gary's third pottery blog said...

Tonight we do her memory right! We shall reach into the cupboard, all the way in back past the cheap plonk and pull out the GOOD STUFF and have a proper wake :)

Hilary said...

Oh Gary and Maude, I'm so sorry to hear that you lost your sweet Emily. I know how much you love and cherish your feline and canine family and my heart goes out to you. She had the best life a cat could have.. surrounded by people and critters who loved her. I'm glad you did that mug.. what a great way to memorialize your girl.

Anna said...

I'm so sorry! But so glad it was peaceful, at home, with all her buddies. We have not been that lucky.

Paul said...

Very sorry for your loss. She was well cared for and loved.

Gary's third pottery blog said...

Thanks everybody. I cried myself out and have these super happy other cat and dogs and now doing a clay and cleaning frenzy :)

Emily SIL said...

Rest in peace, Emily kitten!

Busy Bee Suz said...

**tears**
Sorry for your loss...Emily was a sweetie and you guys gave her an awesome life!!

Becky said...

Oh, so sad. Poor Emily Kitten. I can relate, Gary. Some people don't understand the connection between people and animals, but I completely do. My oldest kitty, Asti, is 16 years old and she's still ornery and feisty but I know she won't live forever. I'm happy to know that Emily had a great life with people that truly loved her. *snif*

Pauline said...

Oh my goodness, tears here too. I am so sorry for you and Maude to hear of the passing of Emily . These little furry family members take such a huge grip of our hearts. She was a lucky cat to live in such a loving home. RIP Emily Kitten xx

George and Maureen Johnson said...

We are so heartfelt sorrowed to hear of you and Maude's loss. You posted a wonderful tribute to her and honoring her devotion and loyalty to you, Maude, and her pet friends. I truly believe her spirit will live forever, in heaven, and I too will be able to meet Emily kitty someday.

Kimberly said...

Oh dear...I am so sorry to hear about Emily. She was a shy little thing compared to big Spike and I never got to know her b/c she was always hiding. She lived a long and happy life... despite going undercover when I came to visit.

denis said...

Emily was lucky because she had the best home. My heart goes out to you Gary and Maude.

kate et jim said...

I'm so sorry Gary and Maude. I'll clink my glass with yours to celebrate her life.

Reverend Awesome said...

Gary and Maude,
I'm so sorry about Emily. You guys were the best Mom and Dad for her. You gave your furry kid such a happy life.

She's always with you in your heart and your art!
Take care of yourselves, guys.

Bert said...

Ironic that I would be catching up on blogs after the holidays and come across your post about Emily. Sorry for your lost. I just buried my 13 year old cat Ashes Saturday Morning. He, along with his brother, were also strays when I got them as kittens. He had a urinary blockage that only surgery would have cured, and being older we decided not to put him through that. In a little more than a week he went from a happy, healthy, cat to one that needed to be relieved of his discomfort. All of that was to say I understand what your going/went through emotionally. I comfort myself with the knowledge that Asheshad a good life and brought his owner much love, joy, and happiness.

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I am a part-time pottery instructor at Cornell University Pot Shop and a full-time studio potter and sculptor, married to superhawt Missus Tastycake.