Therefore, we must celebrate the wonder and the wonderfulness that is Estelle!
Oo. Maybe not. She's giving me the stink-eye.
Oh, to heck with her and her opinions! Estelle came to live with us January 2, 2003. She'd been coming around the house for months with a friend, a manx we called Bruno. Bruno was old, had cataracts, was the sweeter of the two of them, and possibly (judging by Estelle's distinct short backbone, which is a manx trait) Estelle's father. But one day, Bruno got in a fight with another cat and never showed up again. Estelle began to show up at my apartment earlier and earlier and seemed to need more attention. Poor little thing had lost her best friend.
When Chris and I got home from Christmas at my parents, we found Estelle waiting for us. Though we left plenty of food out for her while we were gone, she proceeded to down two whole cans of cat food. It was at this point that we decided that if she did indeed have an owner, then that owner was taking terrible care of her. That's when our favorite little stray kitty moved in.
Estelle still maintains the familiar feral trait of being untrusting of humans. If she gets hungry, though, she'll get a few feet away from us and meow (we call that cuddling), and if we're not looking she'll brush up against our legs. She enjoys nibbling on toes, which ought to be classified as a form of torture because it tickles so much.
Estelle's greatest trait is being a friend to cats. When Trent was dying, she got over her fear of humans enough to sit beside him (and Chris) to make sure he was okay. After Trent died, she sat with Owl to comfort him over the loss of his best friend. Now Owl and Estelle are back to their usual tricks of beating the tar out of each other--I think they're more like siblings than any other two unrelated cats on earth.
There's a sight I miss: the magnificent trio curled up together on a cold day. Trent really became a new Bruno for Estelle, but she's doing quite well without him, fortunately.
She may not like us too much, but she does make life more fun. I can stand her not being a lap kitty so long as she never loses her appetite for human toes.
That's my good Stellee!