What happened

{Photo story is further down.}

What happened is this: on the night we came back from my book promotion trip to Switzerland, my wonderful ginger cat had a very bad accident. My very worst nightmare coming alive. I felt as if my own soul was hit by that very car. Numbed and completely shattered. We are lucky however, as in everything, we are very lucky people, and he was immediately cared for, put under strong medication and we knew he’d get through. We had to leave him at the cat hospital, driving back home in the same night we decided to move back to our old place, we initially had planned to finish the renovations in the writer’s home in Châtillon and move back in May 2023 only. As we planned it as a holiday rental anyway the move was easy, we just had to pack some personal stuff and clear out the fridge.

When we got him home eventually, he was so very happy, I put him up in the study and slept on the couch so he wouldn’t need to be alone. I had to feed him by hand for two weeks, and it may sound very crazy cat lady stuff but the day he started eating by himself again was one of the happiest of my life. I was so relieved. However, as the days passed, it slowly dawned on us that he lost much of his eyesight in the accident. Like those WW2 fighter pilots who crashed their planes. So much sadness. We really tried to talk ourselves out of it but with the cat getting stronger to move about, there was no use in it, he clearly couldn’t see very much anymore. I was absolutely devastated. But lucky the days of google, and we quickly found plenty of information and lots of folks living through similar situations, it turns out that cats cope very well with such conditions and compensate with their other senses.

They do. And they generally work miracles (and the vet worked one too, very clearly; oh and Mozart, I put on some Mozart and Haydn all day, very softly), it’s absolutely insane how fast they mend. He’s moving about the house so quickly now, manoeuvring a maze of chairs and tables, almost running up the old stairs. He also goes outside on the balcony but I think harsh light hurts his eyes, so he only goes mornings and evenings. And he sleeps, sleep is the best healer. He’s still here and he’s still Maître PdT.

And me? Of course I was supposed to blog and feed my instagram and most of all, to promote my book. To write all those happy snippets of my life, the beauty of early summer, all those wonderful moments spent with good friends. Of happy plans and exciting excursions. And I eventually realised how difficult my job was, now don’t get me wrong, I absolutely love what I do, but my work draws so much from positive vibes, and I want to stay authentic, real, so what was I supposed to do with all this heavy heart and tear-stained face. I chose to do nothing at all. Heal, wait for the cat to heal. And I decided on a happy ending and stubbornly worked towards it. Here it is, though shaky, but I call it a happy ending. He’s still here and he’s still Maître PdT. And I’m here and I’m still myself, smiling again (oh elle sourit enfin, she smiles again, my neighbour exclaimed the other day).

We’re well into high summer now, the air is thick and everything goes a little slower. Swimming in the river and drinking rosé. Yet I still want to give you the story I shot back in those early June days, it’s in the writer’s house in Châtillon, it had rained so much and everything was so lush and so incredibly green, a completely different vibe. I made the Plomb au Chocolat from the writer’s wife’s handwritten cook book. The weather was warm and we had dinner outside, grillade, we put some fragrant tree of life twigs on the coals later in the evening. We had some Clos de Vougeot the night before which made it a challenge to choose the right wine. The sparks went high into the sky before it started to rain.

4 thoughts on “What happened

  1. Dear Selina, you did the right thing taking time out to see to your beloved cat. Your blog is always wonderful apart from the trauma of feline misadventures of course. You paint such beautiful scenes with words and your photos are a treat to behold.


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