In Memory of Phoebe

PHOEBE (10/10/97 – 8/5/13)

Phoebe was a very cautious, gentle  half-Himalayan who spent the last 9 years of her life enhancing my premises with her unique personality. She came from a household where she had lived with two larger cats and a golden retriever.  In my apartment she was the only resident pet.

After spending quite a while in hiding after her arrival on the scene, she gradually settled in and began expressing herself.  She was much more vocal than any previous cats who have lived with me–eight of them over the years, none of whom ever talked. 

She was always an indoor cat but one who coexisted beautifully with houseplants.  She was the only cat I’ve  known who did not like to be underfoot. 

She had her favorite nap spots and liked her routines. She was at her best when life was quiet and predictable. She preferred to spend her evenings in my lap, where she would fall asleep purring.

As an aging cat she still had many good times. We tried to avoid trips to the vet or other unsettling experiences.  She was generally a very healthy cat–until she was found to have a probable inoperable cancer in May of this year. 

Everyone who knew Phoebe loved her. She didn’t let herself be seen very often, preferring to hide if other people were present, but she made an impression on the few who caught a glimpse of her.  

In her final days she showed a revived interest in playing and exploring. In her final weeks she was making friends with a neighborhood stray cat by touching noses through the window screen. Shortly before she died, though her hind legs were failing her, she managed to come out and inspect the briefcase of a visiting salesperson.

I believe I had a chance to get to know Phoebe well. It was a chance I feel privileged to have had. Phoebe was an extraordinary cat who will be greatly missed. 

PHOEBE – June 17, 2013

 – Joan Wagner Teller, Portland, OR