Paris and Hennessy

Mitzi the Mean Cat went back to the shelter a few weeks ago, after biting three out of four Persheys. Genevieve was spared only because we were so fastidious about keeping them apart.

Within a few days of dropping her off with the wonderfully understanding folks at the Humane Society, I started bugging Ben about trying again with another cat. He was flummoxed and perhaps even a bit annoyed by my persistence. Life with Mitzi was as unpleasant as it was brief. I'll have a scar for a good long while from the deep bite she delivered to my hand on Christmas morning. I was justifiably skittish around her, and we breathed a huge sigh of relief when she was gone.

So why try again? Particularly since, as I admitted to Ben in a weak moment, I don't actually think I like cats that much.

I love the idea of pets. Ever since we moved into this house I've thought it needed a cat on the windowsill. I have the perfect dog names all lined up, one for a boy and one for a girl, when the opportunity arises for us to have a dog again (Genevieve is scared of dogs). I miss taking the dog for a walk each morning and evening. I specifically miss Deacon, our dearly departed pit mix. We have a couple of photographs of him hanging up in our house, and sometimes just catching a glimpse of his kind face is enough to make me grieve all over again.

That is the best case scenario when you adopt a pet: you will be devastated when they die because you loved them so much. And even the good ones that don't draw blood on holidays are likely to cause all sorts of inconvenience. Suddenly you have more poop to deal with, and arrangements to make whenever you wish to leave town, and if you don't want to add yet another warm body to your bed you have to start closing your bedroom door at night, thereby ruining the temperature control in your eighty-year-old house. 

We didn't just adopt one cat to replace Mitzi the Mean Cat. Why not double our trouble? We came home with two.

They are a pair. Hennessy the handsome tabby cat, and Paris the beautiful white cat. They were at the shelter for about two months as pairs are harder to adopt out. As it turns out, they don't actually seem to like each other very much, but that's okay. We actually seem to like both of them very much. Hennessy is playful and affectionate. Paris is stately and lazy. (She also has strong maternal instincts; one of the inconveniences she has introduced to our household is the need to pick Genevieve up immediately if she starts crying, or else Paris starts going for her scruff.)

I'm not afraid of either of them. They sit on my lap and purr. They are patient with the enthusiastic little girls. We all like them so much (even me) it's all but inevitable that we're looking at the best case scenario of pet ownership: heartbreak in the future.

And I'm so glad for it.
Hennessy, aka the Racoon
Paris, aka the Polar Bear

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