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Thursday, May 14, 2015

The Real Gypsy -- Three Years Later

Those who have started following The Marmelade Gypsy over the past few years may not know there was a real Marmy Gyp. So please indulge me while I remember Gypsy, the namesake of this blog and my good buddy for 14 years, on the third anniversary of his passing this weekend. For many years, this photo was the banner for The Marmelade Gypsy.


Everyone who has a cat thinks theirs is the greatest -- even if they periodically despair of bad behavior. And they're right.
And so was I.


I won't go into Gypsy's story here, apart from the fact that he found me when he was just a kitten, about eight weeks old. It took two months before he became our cat. Well, admittedly our cat. As Rick said to me about six weeks before that, "You've got another cat."


He was playful and sweet and he loved his treats.


He also appreciated hanging out under the tree at Christmas. "I'm ready for my close-up, Mr. DeMille," he seemed to be saying.


He was always ready for his close-up and there was a secret to the good photos I had of him. His limited vocabulary had two words that made him look up alertly. "Fancy Feast." Long after we had moved from Fancy Feast to a better food, he still would perk at the name. So, instead of "cheese," we'd mention the FF word and bingo!


Like many animals, he liked the sink.


And, he was tolerant of the seasonal humiliation of bow ties and Halloween costumes...

 

...and one couldn't do laundry, knit, read the paper or a book without his crawling up for attention. Which I was always only too glad to give.


So many of us have had our pets leave us, hopefully after long, happy lives. When Rick and I went to Europe, we left a very sick cat in the hands of a wonderful woman named Jan who came to stay with him for the nearly three weeks we were gone. It was tough duty -- she had a lot of phone calls with Friend Kate and our wonderful vet who talked her down more than once when Gypsy stopped eating. She gave him his IV fluids like a champ and he hung out with her while she did her bead work. Before we went away, we did pictures with the sweet boy.


And Jan took this photo while we were gone. It's part of a series of his last pictures. When we returned he was so thin. I didn't want to remember him that way. I am convinced he hung on during our trip and for two weeks after so he could be with us when he let go.


Blogger Vagabonde kindly made me this wonderful waterlogue version of Gypsy which I've since had made into note cards.


I find his fur in the keyboard and he's still a part of this blog, even though Lizzie now has center stage in the banner.


Time helps heal but it doesn't always stop the tears. Lizzie is filled with play and a big purr and I love her to pieces. She is Lizzie -- she is not Gypsy. There is no other Gypsy, nor will there ever be.


And I'm OK with that.

30 comments:

Castles Crowns and Cottages said...

Sweet baby....sweet as pie. And that Waterlogue version is precious. HUGS TO YOU dearest jeanie! Anita

Castles Crowns and Cottages said...

And OH do I love that Paris painting!

Betsy@My Salvaged Treasures said...

I know exactly how you feel. Our Ernie used to sit on the chair next to me when I was on the computer and making jewelry. I still miss his paw on my keyboard. Thanks so much for sharing.

Mary@mydogsmygardenandmary said...

I know you feel. My two dogs are always close by and follow me everywhere. They are getting up there and Waldo is getting grey.
Your Gypsy was a beautiful loving cat.
So glad that you have Lizzie to keep your company.
Have a wonderful weekend.
Mary

Angelsdoor * Penny said...

Sending kisses above to dear Gypsy, and a gentle hug for you.
blessings,
Penny

Dr. Kathy McCoy said...

What a beautiful, sweet treasure Gypsy was! Your wonderful post brought tears to my eyes. He has always had a special place in my heart -- in part because he was obviously such a loving companion to you and Rich and in part because he so resembled my beloved Gus, who, as you know, passed away 11 months ago at the age of 16. No cat ever replaces another, but if we keep our hearts open, we find love anew in new furry companion. Yet there are some cats that are unforgettable. I like to think that Gypsy and Gus are hanging out together over the Rainbow Bridge.

psychelyn said...

Oh Gypsy was a very nice companion, I can feel that from your words. He was very beautiful looking cat too. Fancy Treats eh? I remember our Cosme who also actively reacts to the sound of kitchen utensils.

Tracy said...

Oh, my... has been 3 years already?! LOVED this look back with the Gypsy...What a beautiful boy he was. our friend Vagabonde's painting of him is such a wonderful portrait! There is only one of us--animals too--so each is precious. RIP, sweet Gypsy... :o) ((LOVE & HUGS))

Victoria Zigler said...

I'm glad Lizzie is some comfort to you, though I know what you mean about her not being Gypsy. Nobody can ever take his place in your heart. I'm sure he's waiting patiently for you to join him across the rainbow bridge.

I was lucky enough to have been following you before you lost Gypsy; though I hadn't been for very long at that point. It was him that made me stop and check out your blog, actually, because he reminded me of my boy, Chance, who I'd lost a few years before.

You never forget, though it gets easier to think of the happy times rather than thinking of the heartache of losing them. I just wish it was as easy to remember that myself, while I'm missing my Chance kitty, and Kero dog too, as it is to tell you, if that makes sense.

Like I said, I lost Chance a few years before I started following your blog; he only lived a couple of years. Then, last August, I lost my Westie, Kero. Next weekend (May 23rd, to be exact) would have been Kero's 11th birthday. Despite the years between the losses, it feels like I only just lost Chance before I lost Kero.

Kitty said...

Our 4 footed kids live forever in our hearts. This week end will be bittersweet but I pray that his special memories will cheer you. Love to you and Rick.

Lisa from Lisa's Yarns said...

Gypsy seemed like the sweetest kitty. Some of your descriptions of him remind me of Ted as it seems like they had similar temperaments. I hate that you had to lose Gypsy but I am glad that he help on until you got home from Paris so you could say your last good byes. I can't believe it's been 3 years since you lost him, though... I think the pain of losses like that never go away but I am glad you have so many great memories (and pictures) of him. Sending hugs and warm thoughts your way!

P.S. It looks like Phil might be getting a kitty! A friend's in-law's cat had kittens so if Phil can get a boy one (he prefers boy cats) he will adopt one.

Gwen said...

awwwww. :: hugs ::

gigihawaii said...

What a gorgeous cat and friend to you! Lovely, heartbreaking pictures.

Mary Rose's said...

((((((HUG))))))

jo(e) said...

Aw, what a lovely tribute. And yes, I had wondered about the unusual name of your blog!

Joanne Huffman said...

A lovely loving tribute.

Barb said...

What a sweetheart (both you and Gypsy). I like that FF story! Our special pet friends always have a place in our hearts.

anno said...

Oh, so lovely to see that charming rascal again. They really do become part of the family, don't they? So glad you have all of these wonderful memories!

shoreacres said...

Gypsy was a special one, for sure. They truly are like people, in the sense that each is unique, and irreplaceable. Still, Lizzie is special in her own way, and a lovely reminder of how life can give again after life has taken away.

Marilyn Miller said...

Sending a hug! Isn't it funny, but I was talking to Joey today and remembering Gypsy and how they exchanged little gifts. And now I visit you and you have such a lovely remembrance of this very special kitty. He was just wonderful and we will never forget.d
Hugs from me and joey!

vicki (skiourophile) said...

They stay in our hearts forever. There is something particularly special about ginger cats too.

The Artful Diva said...

Gypsy was a wonder - I know you miss him.

Tammie Lee said...

how lovely that you had this wonderful friend. my heart leans towards yours.

littleRamstudio said...

Lovely post Jeanie.
Each and every one of our cats have been so special, all with their own personalities.
I look forward to meeting them all again one day...
Heather :)
PS. Got your email, will reply soon. Getting ready for a big art event this coming weekend.

Janice Kay Schaub said...

I often dream of my lost ones. Its nice that they visit that way, its usually bitter sweet though because I am always looking for them in the dreams, like they are lost............sad. My attachment to my dogs is more than with people. There are no conflict, misunderstandings or arguments (well, maybe some) they are perfect in their love for us.
Sad but lovely story.
Janice

Tina Fariss Barbour said...

Oh, Jeanie, tears here because I know how much it hurts. He was a beautiful boy and so lucky to have a home with you. These are precious pictures and I'm sure you have precious memories.

Sometimes I feel the bed give like a cat has jumped up on it. But no cat is there. I like to think it's one of the babies I've lost, stopping by.

Esme said...

Such a sweet post. You have me crying. You are right they touch such a soft spot in your heart. They are our babies. They each have their own little unique personality. Thankfully now that our phones have camera-we can take lots and lots of photos. I hope Gypsy and Penelope are resting peacefully. . I am glad I am not dressed for work as the tears are flowing. xo.

Esme said...

PS I love the photos of the two of you together.

Retired English Teacher said...

Aww, Gypsy, what a cat you were. Thanks for giving so much joy to our dear Jeanie.

CatieAn said...

oh jeanie gypsy loved you so much and of course waited for you to get back to spend his last days with you. I love my fur babies so much and as they age I always get that lump in my throat.....we have several buried under our big beautiful pine tree in the back yard.
Thank you for sharing all those beautiful pictures and memories with us.
Big Hugs

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