We chose her name on a pebble beach at Hermance in June 2007. We were on a family outing selecting pebbles to decorate the tiles of our bathroom. The children were 6 and 8, the original iPhone was about to be launched in the US, and I my digital camera was an 8MP Ricoh GRD (I was probably still shooting film).
Earlier that month, ww were offered to take in a kitten by Fabienne’s employee at the time, who’s cat had just given birth to two kittens. Sushi’s brother was called Zorro. We were playing around on the beach, and the name just sprung to mind. Fabienne and the children had seen the kitten before hand, but I hadn’t. It turned out the name lui allait comme un gant. Sushi joined the family in August of that year, on our return from the Cévennes.
She was curious and full of life like any young kitten, and fitted in to our way of life very quickly. She was smart and a fast learner. She never destroyed anything, nor hurt the children, or anybody for that matter. As we have an open kitche and she was so full of life, we designed a wodden curtain to keep her in the kitchen at night. She quickly (and proudly) learned how to climb over it by using the tape between the boards to make her way up.
She was lean and elegant.
She loved being around us, welcomed us in the morning or when we returned from work or school, chatting and circling around our feet.
She quickly learnt how to ask to go out, how to ask to open doors (when she didn’t do it herself), take the lift, befriend dogs and their owners, go on walks with them around the building. Everybody, young or old, knew who Sushi was, to such a point that Fabienne was routinely called “Sushi’s mom”.
She loved to play with the children, hidding in their bedrooms (or better, sleeping on their beds). She chose the most unexpected spots to sprawl out and take a nap, more than often in the middle of the way. The bathroom sink (the left one, Mathias’) and the bath we among her favourites. She spent a lot of time on table tops, chatting to us, watching, sitting, laying or slepping, but being outside and doing cat things was where she spend most of her active time.
She had her routines (as most cats?). Asking for food first thing in the morning, scratching at our door if we slept in, waiting patiently for us to enter the kitchen, before even checking the state of her bowl. Emma switched her door handle around as Sushi figured out how to open it.
At one point, she was one for laying on my legs in front of TV, sprawling out all her length and digging her claws ever so gently in my thighs…
Boxes and shopping bags were a treat. On my return from food shopping on Saturday, she loved to hide in an empty shopping bag to surprise us all of a sudden. Scratching the bag with a chopstick turned her hunting mood on.
She never destroyed anything with her claws or her teeth. She used an old wooden crate we have to do her claws on, and she was clean from day one.
Fabienne always managed to find and organise catsitters while we left on holiday. She always stayed at home during our trips (no cattery) and was taken care of by friends of Mathias or Emma, or by a neighbour.
She explored the building at night when we had scaffoldings up, and finished once chasing (or chased) by Anne’s cat when she entered its appartment.
She kept her habits until the end, and still liked to be around us. After we discovered she was suffering from a kidney cancer, she slowed down, and started to pull her fur out. That was a tell sign that something was wrong. We gave her painkillers to aleviate the pain, but we knew there was no way out of this.
I hope she had a good cat’s life. I think so. She was surrounded with love in our household, and was part of our daily lives. Her passing is timely with our children reaching their young adulthood, and with that gritty feeling that time flies by.
Sushi left us peacefully on Tuesday July 28th, 2020 at 5:45pm.
Miss you pussy.