Other People’s Abys: Indy hunts with StarClan

I hate making these posts. Our good friend Pat lost her lovely blue girl, Pentaclecats Indigo Blue, better known as Indy, died today. She had been losing weight and was finally diagnosed with cystitis. She was a retired showgirl, joining Pat, her son Mike and ruddy boy Coqui, only 4½ years ago.

My heart has joined the Thousand, for my friend has stopped running today. Sleep well in Tuonela, dear Indy.

Aby-a-Day – 2 July: Silverpelt has two new stars tonight

Sad day today. Our good friend Molly’s husband, Don, died this morning. “Don was the brains behind Team Aby and the enforcer,” Molly told me. Meg said, “I still remember how Don made me laugh with his plans to ‘rough up’ Wain (Harding) in back of a showhall.” I only got to meet him once, when I went down to Florida with my ex and we met up at – what else? – a cat show. He was a sweetheart, though; Molly’s birthday post was actually a result of him contacting me.

This is what he sent Meg: “Message from Don re. Molly. Could you help by contacting your Aby-a-Day people or something?

Hi Meg. As you may or may not know Molly has a couple of events happening this month. One being her 80 birthday next Friday the 16th and the other will be the end of working career when she leaves her job on the 31st. Since she considers her friends in CFA her extended family. I am trying to create a birthday greetings blitz with her friends. I solicit your help with letting her friends in CFA know. Since she considers you a great friend I thought you could help in this effort getting the word around. More to follow. – The Donald.” (How funny is it that he referred to himself that way?) And then in an email to me, he wrote, “Oh by the way to get all the way across the ocean you have to type loud.” You can read Don’s obituary here.

As if that wasn’t enough, Jacoby’s cousin Taz (aka GC, GPD, NW Anubis Taz Mania) also died today after a two-month battle with pancreatitis.

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Taz and Jake were more than cousins. They were show companions. We shared hotel rooms with Meg and Taz on more than one occasion.

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Jake even lent Taz his clothes!

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Meg and Taz recently came back to become, among other things, 15th best Premier in CFA this past show season.

My heart has joined the Thousand, for my friends stopped running today.

Aby-a-Day – 29 June: Mourning anniversary (Friday Flashback)

Yesterday, 28 June, was the 10th anniversary of Gun-Hee’s death. He succumbed to FIP at the age of 1 year, 9 months, 1 week and 5 days. He had such a short life, but he made a huge impact on my life, and he is the reason that this blog exists.

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Sherry took this photo of Gun-Hee and his littermates. It’s one of my favourite photos.

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This was the only litter that Pellburn Scarface Cat Pacino and Marica’s Bright Amber of Pellburn had together. Scar is, of course, Jacoby’s father as well. Amber was actually imported from Denmark and had Finnish, German, Norwegian and Australian cats in her pedigree. I made this image of them together in the style of those cheesy wedding photos set against fake backgrounds.

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It was love at first sight when I met him. He was named after the title character in the Korean serial “First Love of a Royal Prince” because we were adding him to a household with two female cats and he would be spoiled rotten, much like Choi Gun-Hee in the series. I loved that character, and the name Pellburn Prince Gun-Hee was such an awesome name…so that’s why I gave him a Korean name.

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He was there when I got engaged.

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But he still only had one birthday.

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In his short life, he did everything Jake did. If I had known about cat strollers back then, he would have been Strollercat.

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He was a part of my life for such a short time…but he has affected my life for over 12 years. And I still think of him every day.

Aby-a-Day – 2 June: Logan’s last cat bed (Swedish Saturday)

When pets are cremated in Sweden, it seems the pet crematoriums return the ashes to you in a simple, pine box. This is how Björn received the ashes of first Olivia and then Pyret, and that’s how we got Logan back from the vet as well.

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Lorelai came to see what was left of the brother and show companion she will never get to meet.

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Bittersweet photo, isn’t it? Hang one, more where that came from.

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To my surprise, when I opened the box Logan’s ashes came in, they were just loose inside! Back in the States, you would get the ashes in a box, sure, but the ashes inside the box were in a plastic bag of some sort.

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Alfred also came to investigate Logan’s loose ashes. Yeah, that’s the more bittersweet thing I mentioned earlier.

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Of course, for Harri and Patrick, I had lovely urns made by Alex in Welderland, and while I love them, another would be too heavy and too expensive to ship from the States to Europe. Gun-Hee didn’t have so much as an urn as a “memorial box” which included a flask of his ashes along with other souvenirs of his short life. I looked online for cat urn options in Europe and eventually discovered Etsy seller 1st4Signs.

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It’s really beautiful. The box is oak, with an engraved slate top and a photo of Logan. Of course, Freddy was on hand to help me put his brother from another mother into his final cat bed.

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I poured Logan’s ashes into the fancy new box. They fit perfectly.

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Then we put the lid back on.

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It fastens with two brass screws. Jacoby came to see what was going on while I was screwing the lid back on.

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Not sure how a screwdriver equals a possible meal, but all right…

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There we are. Logan is in his final resting place.

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Freddy and Jake say goodbye to Logan one last time.

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No Jake…this won’t be you for a very, very long time. I hope.

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For now, Logan is on the windowsill near Björn’s computer underneath which Pyret loved to sleep, next to Pyret and Olivia’s ash-boxes. Eventually we’ll have everyone’s ashes on one shelf somewhere. It just seems so sad that the older we get, the more little boxes of ashes we collect.

(Also…and I am sorry it’s such a depressing post…but, happy birthday, Sherry!)

Aby-a-Day – 14 May: Logan’s last professional photos

At the Scandinavian Winners Show, Logan had his second set of professional photos taken.

I had absolutely no idea that they would be his last set of professional photos.

I mean, look at him! He doesn’t even look sick in these photos.

This one, he’s talking with that voice of his…I can still hear it.

Hard to believe that only two weeks later, Alfred and I said goodbye to him. He’s so alive in these shots! It’s only slightly ironic that I got them one month to the day that he died.

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But the best part is…

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…while the photographer was snapping his photos…

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…I was taking photos of Logan getting his photo taken!

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I think it’s kind of cool to see both sides of the same photo session.

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I haven’t tried to match up my photos to the professional’s.

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I’m not sure I ever can, but I am so glad to have both sets of photos.

Aby-a-Day – 1 May: Bringing Logan home

Today Björn and I went to Jönköping to collect Logan’s ashes.

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His ashes came packed in a very nice cardboard box. They even put a little gold heart sticker on it. (It says “Contains wooden cremation urn” on the label.)

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Of course, Alfred came to see what I was doing.

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Is he looking up to StarClan to see if he can see Logan?

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Inside the cardboard box was this little wooden urn. They put a label with Logan’s name on it. This seems to be the common urn for cat ashes in Sweden; both Pyret and Björn’s other cat, Olivia, have identical urns.

However, this little box is not Logan’s final resting place. I’ve ordered an absolutely brilliant little casket of oak and slate with his photo on it from an Etsy seller in the UK (that’s the proof of it above). You may remember my special welded urns for my Siamese boys, Harri and Patrick, but it would cost a bomb to have one of those shipped here to Sweden. But this is perfect for Logan.

And on the way home on the train, it rained…and we saw the rainbow at the top of the post.

Aby-a-Day – 26 April: The two holes in our house (Thursday Things)

Remember what you were doing in February? In February, we had a happy household with five cats.

Now, we only have three. It feels very empty. We will get another Aby soon…it was in the works before we knew Logan was even sick. And we do want to add another Singapura someday. They are so much fun to show!

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But that is all in the future. Right now, it’s just too hard to stop looking at the past.