In 1995 I stumbled into Tigger at the Boulder Humane Society. He was almost 5, and was a big Maine Coon. As I picked him up, he rolled onto his back and laid his head against my chest, and looked into my eyes. He went home with me that day.
He dealt with the cleaning lady, my random absences for business travel, and cat food experiments with calm and equanimity. He was a buddy and a friend and was as happy keeping me company while I worked on my bike in the basement, or reading a book.
When Nancy came into our lives, after a short period of adjustment, he preferred her lap to mine; demonstrating his impeccable taste. When Nancy’s cats moved in, cat politics became a new theme in our house, but Tigger adjusted well. He never liked being in a car, but as car trips had resulted in bad things like getting neutered, declawed, and having a thermometer put in uncomfortable places; we could understand. He loved nothing more than just being near one of us, and would fall asleep with his chin on our arm, or leg; purring loudly. He hated thunderstorms and only went outside once – and the sensation of the wind in his hair freaked him out. He froze, making it easy to retrieve him and bring him inside. He never went outside again.
After 15 years of patrolling big old houses, and rushing to meet anyone who came to the door, the years started to catch up to him. He got slower and could no longer jump to a windowsill. To his final days, he loved a good meal, a good nap, and a good cuddle. Our lives have been made richer by Tigger; and memories of him will always keep us warm.