Sunday, September 11, 2011


A furry tan-gray kitten bunny-hopped after our daughter in a barnyard one brisk gray November Iowa morning.

"I think we're going to get another cat!"

And what a cat!  We named her Chessie after the painted mascot on the Chesapeake and Ohio Railroad cars.  Chessie peeked out from under her blanket just like the Chessie logo.  Chess grew up under the shadow of Zar, our fox-red tomcat presence.  After Zar left Earth some years later, Chessie's strong ruling personality began to emerge.  She had been repressed!  We were surprised to find an Egyptian Royal Cat in our home, and we were her subjects.  I picture Chessie, wearing a jeweled collar and golden earrings, mincing around the Royal Court, ruling humans and cats with an iron paw. 

Chessie mellowed in years but not in temperament.  When she was twelve, we sought to revitalize her waning physical energy with a surprise orange kitten, Mrs. Harris.  After Chessie got over viewing Mrs. Harris as prey, she went out and hunted food for her adopted kitten.  One day Chessie took a flying leap over a six foot fence to chase a dove in the soybean field.  Before Mrs. Harris' arrival, Chessie could hardly climb slowly over the same fence. 

Soon more cat family appeared for Chessie.  We adopted a large gray full grown domestic wildcat, a Tom about town.  Later, a brother and sister kitten pair, golden Sancat and dark tabby Sasha came into our cat clan.  Chess had never enjoyed a family to rule, and she loved the role!  She adopted little Sancat as her own. Chessie stepped back so Sancat could have her food bowl.  Hope, Sancat and Sasha's mother, had the same gray brown striped coat, slender build, and even the bright orange spot on her forehead!  Hope, like Chessie, also ruled her cat family!  Hope and Chessie were like-minded sisters, yet came from different sections of the country.

It is of interest to study a can clan.  Each cat is unique with individual eating habits, some are nibblers, some self-feeders, and some will eat any thing in sight, "no food left behind!"  Language patterns and dialects can be detected.  Young Mrs. Harris learned "Catspeak" from Chessie.  Genetic ancestral territories are also in evidence.  Mrs. Harris is a Sand Cat (a small golden desert cat), Sancat comes from the African desert but from a different region. Chessie comes form North Africa in the reeds near the Nile and resembles an African Wild Cat. Tom looks every part the hunter he is with a Bobcat and Cougar feel.  *Dark gray Tom sports a Cheetah-like tail from eleven million years ago!  His tail has very dark rings followed by a bright white tip!  Sasha has the looks, muscular body, and personality of a small leopard!  Our golden cats are much tamer than our dark coated hunters.

Chessie never forgave Tom for moving into her home.  Tom shrank back in fear from this petite ferocious African Wildcat one third his size.  Tom is also afraid of Sasha.  She rescued her little brother, Sancat, at only six months of age from Tom's bullying.

Chessie chose her last two days of Earth School to actively go outside.  She went up and down the steps by herself!  She thoroughly enjoyed the September sun and wild beauty of nature.  Tom hunted for Chessie, a small rabbit provided red meat she relished.  A cat clan represents loyalty and cooperative unity.  Chessie loved the grass beneath her paws and even some gentle rain.  Her adopted Sancat son accompanied her around the yard on her journey and lay beneath her favorite bushes with her, protecting and guiding.

We all said goodbye to Chessie on Sept 11 several years ago.  Of course she is still here.  Occasionally we can hear Chessie's voice through some of Mrs. Harris' cat language patterns.  Chessie had special ways of saying "Ah-Ra" (Flat "A" like "apple") and  "Mrrr-row" with a purring sound.  Several times Sancat and I have heard that physical voice, but Mrs. Harris was asleep and so were the others.  No one was visible outside.  Chessie is near.

What do we learn from Chessie?  Chess overcame chronic illness and pain to keep going using her iron-melting will.  Chessie teaches us life lessons on how to live and how to cross over!  Through her example, we can climb life's mountain as joyfully, assertively, and as full of life as The Little Chessie That Could!

Cattitude:  Thousands of years ago cats were worshipped as God's, cats have never forgotten this.

"One thing I like about cats is that they are unapologetically themselves," Rob adds.

Related Posts: 
Welcoming Mrs. Harris and I Am Your Angel (July 2011),  Flowers in the Rain (Aug 2011), Catching Up (April 2011), Silver Stars and Moonbeams and Picture Perfect (Mar 2011), What Kind of Animal Are You? (Jan 2011) Stars and Snow Spirit of Phoebe (a spirit cat Nov 2010)

How To Speak Cat, The Essential Primer of Cat Language by Alexandra Sellers.  "Ma` RRow" says Mrs. Harris, "I am blessed."

Write Your Own Egyptian Hieroglyphs by Angela McDonald, Egyptologist at the University of Glascow.  Write your own name, your pets' names and more!

"Chess" in Egyptian Hieroglyphs

 The Reader's Digest Illustrated Book of Cats   Felis (numerous species of small Felids including domestic cats) and Acynonyx (Cheetahs in a separate line) developed from approximately 11 million years ago.  Our Tom did not directly inherit his Cheetah tail!  The Field Museum, Chicago, Illinois   In the gift shop, I held a small gray statue made in Egypt of Bastet, the cat goddess.  In the palm of my hand, I remembered an ancient time. The frequency of the purring cat (50-70 Hz)  can aid relaxation and healing.  Lucy provides a purring frequency accompanied by soft piano, nature sounds and balanced with binaural beats. original paintings and custom prints, inquire to receive via E-mail free illustrated PDF book, Silver Butterfly Create A Vision, the inspiration for Out of the Blue.  See Tom's photo on Imagine Healing Pets (Lower Right)  Joel P. Bowman, Ph.D, and Rev. Debra Basham, CHTP, HTt, NLP, RMT

Bastet Egyptian Cat Goddess

Photos, Portrait of Chessie by Emilie
Determination, photo by Paul