Was it really 2004? It was. January 29, 2004, I went to our local humane society and decided to adopt a long-haired, brown tabby. The card on her cage said she was very friendly. (Well, sort of). The card on her cage said she was very affectionate. (Weeeellll, when she wants to be affectionate, she can be, but those moments are less common than I thought they'd be.) The card on her cage said she was a Maine Coon mix. (Well, maybe.) My friend D and her daughter R stopped by while I was there to see which cat I had chosen, and I gave R the choice of two names (both characters in Jane Austen novels). So she named my cat by selecting the one she liked better. Given the ultimate personality that emerged, I'm not sure R chose the name that suits the personality.
On January 30, I went to pick up her after her spay surgery. Upon shaving her belly, the humane society had found the scar from her previous spay surgery, so someone, somewhere, had already taken care of that. All they knew of her was that she'd been found as a stray. From the way she likes to climb my pine tree, I suspect she somehow got outside and/or got lost.
It took her six weeks to get used to the dogs. By week four, I was despairing she would ever tolerate them. She hid behind the baby gate that whole first month. Then, as I watched, she took a look at my dear, darling Georgie, who was completely unfazed by the dogs and walking past them. I could almost see her little brain thinking "Well, if they don't bother that cat, they won't bother me, and I'm sick of this bedroom." Out she came. And she's never looked backed.
She's a typical tabby girl--a bit of a pistol, a little on the grumpy side (but not nearly as grumpy as the wonderful Camille was), too aware that she is far superior to every other life form in this house. I don't think she knows she's a cat. Like the Samoyeds, she doesn't like too sleep with those heat-generating humans, but a couple of times a month she will come and sleep on my head for an hour or two. She's still quite spry at age 10-ish. She has learned to come when called. She would really like to be an only pet, and if not that, than at least an only cat. She is curious, afraid of the vacuum, and chirps like a Maine Coon. She hates being combed or having her nails trimmed. She gets the crazies on a regular basis. She's my stripey girl.