Buster's Tale

Born circa. 1990
Adopted 1991, Kaaawa, Hawaii.

Died Labor Day, September 4, 2000. Kaneohe, Hawaii.

It began raining the evening of the day Buster died. When we got up for our sunrise walk the next morning, mist was hanging on the mountains that rise up sharply behind the house, looking for all the world like a big white cat stretched lazily across the upper slopes, gazing down on his domain.

It rained daily for a week, which some Hawaiians would interpret as a very cosmic omen.


"Neighbor's cat moved in."

That was the insightful notation penned on Buster's first visit to Doug Hook's veterinary clinic in the Temple Valley Shopping Center on December 7, 1991.

Buster was probably between one and two years old at the time and although he weighed in that day at 12 pounds, he was skinny. Turned out he had a broken fang, and after a high tech kitty root canal, he began eating better and quickly plumped out.

The problem of recreating Buster's history is that he "moved in" gradually, and the exact sequence of his movements before finally taking up full-time residence is lost in the mists of our memories.

Together with Tom

To appreciate Buster's appearance at our house, you've got to know about Tommy, a scarred, 15-pound tomcat who appeared at our door one stormy night and stayed, appearing faithfully at mealtimes for several years before disappearing just as abruptly.

Buster started following Tommy back to our house from his real home two houses away, where he lived with our friends Chris & Doreen.

Several times, we dutifully delivered him back to their house, but Buster would soon jump the fence and join Tommy for afternoons lounging around in our driveway. They eventually took up residence together in our garage, and shared a bed we made outside our front door.

Buster and Tommy became, for that period of time, the outside boys, while our other cats lived inside.

 

My mother found a cat bed in a local thrift shop, and it became one of Buster's favorite places, perched on a high storage shelf down in the garage.

Buster and Tommy were inseparable, although Tommy went for long neighborhood walkabouts, while Buster always stuck close to home.

Then one day in late 1995 or early 1996, Tommy didn't show up for dinner, and we never saw him again. In reaction, we brought Buster inside and closed the doors. He quickly adapted.

 

Buster's Tale, Part II

Ian & Meda@home

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