gracie – like babycat – followed the sun. gracie – like babycat – sought snuggles…on her terms. gracie – like babycat – adored food time. gracie – like babycat – spent long periods of time curled up or stretched out sleeping. gracie – unlike babycat – is a farmcat.
she lives outside on the iowa farm, a heated waterbowl on the south side of the house. her food is by the front door and is moved inside at night, so other critters aren’t attracted. you can watch her hunting out in the fields and i shudder to think of what her successes have been. she is free to come and go. i nicknamed her “sweetie” last time we stayed on the airbnb farm and it stuck; she came to any singsong call.
we’d find her – in early morningtime – curled up in the pillows on the porch bench swing on the east side of the house, sunrise warming her. out the dining room windows or the old door to the porch we could see her, eyes closed or maybe just waking, yawning her way into the day. the moment she sensed you were watching, she’d jump down and make a beeline to the door as if to remind you of your veryimportantwork of putting out her food dish.
as the family gathered, everyone adored gracie-cat. she was the belle of the ball, wandering from person to person, collecting sweet nothings. a darling of the farm, this cat was a generous hostess.
there wasn’t much about this farmhouse that wasn’t charming. there wasn’t much about this farm that wasn’t charming. the old silos and barns and sheds – a photographer’s dream. simplicity and tradition, passed-down.
we watched the comings and goings of big farm equipment, witnessed the field on the east side cut down, watched multiple pick-up trucks in and out of the long driveway. it’s a working farm and it’s spring, so it’s busy. we cannot understate how much work it all must be and, though we were unable to see activity from where we stood by the stand of trees with the hammock, we knew all the farms in the distance – close-up and far – were ever as busy.
we went outside in the night. looking in the direction of my favorite two trees, a line of lights on the far horizon…likely farm lights down another country road.
we looked up. the big dipper greeted us and other constellations vied for our attention. we felt tiny. the sky stretched further than we could see.
somewhere out there gracie was likely hunting. she didn’t come around as we stood in the grass. cats are independent creatures, after all.
and babycat – in the plane of the universe that beloved cats go – gave her a high five. “do what you want,” he telepathed to her, knowing full well that first thing in the morning – as the sun rose over the fields and tickled the porch swing – she’d be there waiting, just as he always was. different but the same.
just like people.
read DAVID’S thoughts this NOT-SO-FLAWED WEDNESDAY