Man contemplates life without beloved feline companion
By Blake Rayment, Contributor
This September, I will be moving to Wales. Apparently, from what I’ve heard, moving to a different continent presents a major shift in one’s life; because of that, people keep asking me what I’m most nervous about.
Well, it’s not that I’ll be leaving behind all my friends and family (unless they’re the ones asking the question, of course). Nor is it the fact that I’ll be leaving the comfort of my dark, perfectly-scented basement suite that took me years to fill with the correct levels of musk. I am slightly concerned about the Welsh language and how it utterly baffles me—did you know that the Welsh word for “beer” is “cwrw?” How do you pronounce “cwrw?” Kuh-wer-wuh? Kwer-woo? It’s their official second language. Nevertheless, as moving day creeps closer and closer, the one thing I find myself entirely fixated on is that I will have to learn how to survive without my sweet, perfect baby-bean: Luna Ticklepuss.
Luna is my cat of six years. She is perfect in every possible way: Calico—mostly black with streaks of copper—with little white booties; chubby, round, and squishy like a stress-ball, but with a head the size of a kitten; and a perfect, flaming orange crescent moon that goes over her right eye. She’s my everything. Her and I have been inseparable since she was eight weeks old—if I’m in the house, she is never more than six feet away from me. If I’m anxious, she’s there to purr on my chest. Bored? Catnip, and her pupils go as wide as a nineteen-year-old’s at a rave. She’s been with me through two heartbreaks, a full degree completion, five jobs, the loss of a grandfather, the birth of three nephews, and everything in between. She’s my best friend in the truest sense of the word, and she won’t be allowed in my tiny Welsh dorm room. This has been the cause of the ball of anxiety sitting in my stomach like a giant, overripe durian fruit. I will be ripped in half. I will be forced to survive without her.
So, what can I expect? Pure loneliness, fear, boredom, stress, and an overall feeling of unreserved emptiness. This is an obvious inevitability, one that I must come to terms with. I’ve been forced to try and figure out a game plan, one that will leave me as emotionally prepared as possible.
Step one: Photos of my sweet baby. My phone has already dedicated 50 per cent of its space to cat photos, but what’s another 25–30 per cent? Apps are overrated.
Step two: Record my baby’s purr. At least this way, when times get especially tough, I’ll be able to plug in my earbuds and hear a sound that, for me, is associated with pure goodness. (Note to self: Name the track “Luna’s purrfect mixtape.”)
Step three: An online nanny-cam with two-way audio. This is perhaps the most expensive step, but also the most crucial. Positioned wisely, the camera will allow me to see her for most hours of the day—chubbiness withstanding, this will be by the food bowl.
Step four: Tissues. I will be crying, and I will be crying a lot. I’ll be in a foreign land without my most valuable emotional crutch. It would be lunacy to expect myself to also wallow in snot and salty tears without some tissues to aid me. (Note to self: Cut out the word “lunacy” from vocabulary—the pun will make me too emotional and I can’t let the Welsh think I’m weak.)
Step five: Get a fish. Yes, a fish will be far harder to cuddle with in the dead of night, but not entirely impossible given the right equipment. A tube-shaped fish-enclosure with a watertight seal and I’m laughing—through the tears, of course.
Step six: Learn to live without my heart and soul.
I’m scared, but I’m also not afraid to admit it. Honestly? I don’t think I will survive without Luna, but I’ll try—how else would I ever see her again? And if it’s too hard without her, pet-friendly apartments can’t be that expensive in Wales. The country would be lucky to have her.
If worst comes to worst—or should I say when worst comes to worst—I can always turn to my other crutch: A tall, frosty pint of cwrw. Kuh-wer-wuh? Kwer-woo? Help.