Upon finding a cat whisker

Boomer the tabby cat

I looked down and found a cat whisker today, a rare and auspicious find in a household with a cat. Or so I was raised to believe and amaze over. This one, was the most rare I’ve ever found, a dark black. I spotted it as it lay on the oak hardwood floor and I swear I heard fairies singing as I reached to pick it up. I held it in the morning sun and twirled it between my fingers and discovered it was black at the thick end but then lightened toward the tapered end just like its tabby owner.

Boomer’s whiskers are mostly white. I don’t even think I’ve ever noticed dark ones but he must have them, and obviously one less now. I do know I don’t have any other cats in and out of our house so it must have been his. I set the whisker on my  desk so I could look at it later, and admire it some more and think about the fortune of the day.

“I found a whisker today, not just a regular whisker, a dark black one,” I said to my husband.

“Um-huh,” he said as he walked through on his way out the kitchen door. He must not have really heard my really good news. I followed him.

“I saved it in on my desk if you want to take a look,” I said as I leaned out and talked after him as he walked to his workshop.

I started a hum and wondered how long before he came back in. I did a few morning dishes, started a load of laundry and folded a load from the dryer. My weekend list of chores was checked off one by one and I was honestly feeling luckier and luckier. It was an auspicious day!

As it turns out it was hours before my husband came back in from the workshop. The fact of the matter is, it’s evening and he still hasn’t come to take a look at my special whisker find…of the century. Boomer has been up on my desk twice since this morning and once I caught him standing on the whisker. I had to save it before he literally walked off with it stuck to his foot. It’s moved to a safer place of honor now.

In my family, growing up, finding a cat whisker was as good as finding a wishbone, or finding coins on the pavement, or even better, a dollar bill in the laundry. Rare things were always to be appreciated, and good fortune, or the promise of good fortune followed especially to those who appreciated. To this day, and as recently as their last visit in June, my father brought me one of his cat’s whiskers because he knew I’d marvel at his wonderful find.

My husband isn’t coming to take a look, and probably a lot of you wouldn’t either. This ordinary thing is not that extraordinary for you. We’re raised differently. This is why when we work together you may see the circumstances differently than I do. What’s practically a miracle to me is waste to you. What’s a burden for me, might be a resource to you. What’s a resource to me, could be a threat to you. Our attitudes color our view and always have.

For me, my special black cat whisker find today wasn’t just shed makings of the usual furry dust bunnies floating on the hardwoods. It’s a treasure from our stripey tabby and so much more.

***

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About Robin Arnold

Reader, writer, gardener, geek, maker of homes in several states, now settled in Virginia with husband Bob, and Hazel and Wilson the tabby cats.
This entry was posted in Cat stories and tagged . Bookmark the permalink.

One Response to Upon finding a cat whisker

  1. a rare and special person you are…

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