Remembering Rupert

Rupert as a kitten, photograph by Steven Kennard 2002

Our first sight of Rupert was when he was tiny and barely had his eyes open. We had gone looking for a kitten and we were very clear about what we wanted: female, brown or black, solid colour. Perhaps there were females, brown or black, solid colours in that litter, I don’t remember. All I remember seeing that day was a tiny striped orange male tiger and we looked at him and each other and said “that’s our boy”.

Rupert, aged about 1 year, 2002 – Photo by Steven Kennard

And now…

Now it’s time. Time to feature our lovely cat Rupert once more by way of ending a chapter and beginning another. We are preparing to welcome a new Cornish Rex resident to our home, so this is the time to remember Rupert and reminisce.

Rupert - "I think leather suits me, do you?" - Ellie Kennard 2012
Rupert – “I think leather suits me, do you?” – Ellie Kennard 2012

He was our last Cornish Rex cat, who died in the fall of 2019 at over 17 years old. As he aged and became weaker, he became very needy and, if possible, even more affectionate. While caring for him, I was remembering all the times we have had with this wonderful character. To the end he was still the same personality, still sought the comfort of Steven’s arms (or mine) whenever we sat still for a minute. Pictured next you will see some of the things he liked to do. Read on…

He was crazy about the vacuum cleaner and would lie on the stairs (or anything else) when they were being vacuumed in the hopes that you might relent and vacuum him. If you didn’t give in to this whim, you risked breaking your neck as you fell over him.

Rupert loved being vacuumed

One time he decided to crawl up into the chimney while the woodstove was being vacuumed and Steven turned his back. We were only alerted to this when we heard a scratching inside the chimney as he tried to climb higher. Steven had to reach inside the chimney pipe and pull him out, where he then appeared as a (temporarily) black Cornish Rex. We didn’t think to take photos of this event, unfortunately. Bath time had to take precedence. And did I say that he loved a bath? One day I was running a hot bath and let it run a little long. As I rushed to turn off the taps I found Rupert wading around in it, thrilled to find heat and water, two of his favourite elements, together in one place.

This poor creature was only playing dead

One day Rupert came upon a vole that was making his way through the grass near where he was sunning himself. He caught it somehow and brought it to the path to examine it. The poor creature lay as if dead, on his back and absolutely refused to play with Rupert, so he got bored and went back to his blanket. At that point the vole leapt to his feet and ran off. Rupert caught his escape out of the corner of his eye but never managed to find him again.

Rupert, an old man, 2019

This is one of the last photos of him that I took, in the Spring of the year he died. He loved to lie in his little bed feeling the warmth of the sun on his head and ears. He was a special cat, one who will always be a warm memory now that the pain of loss has diminished. Today, on Friday July 2 we are adopting a 6 year old retiring breeding Cornish Rex female, who will have a loving home to welcome her and give her a comfortable next chapter in her life. She has large shoes/boots to fill. We’ll do our best to help her fill them.

4 Responses

  1. A most lovable and unusual kitty. I always marveled at how he liked to ‘be played’ by Steve like a bagpipe under his arm. Rupie is unforgettable.
    Time now to welcome another Cornish to the clan. There’s love enough for more.

    1. I had forgotten that musical side of him! Yes indeed. Plenty of love for more. And each is unique. But you are right, Rupert was both unforgettable and so loveable.

  2. Rupert was a great cat, the new girl will have big shoes to fill. Our Samantha is 18 now and has gotten more needy and whiny it seems. I can understand about not wanting another at first. Took us 4 years between the time I lost my first cat till I was ready for another. I love that he loved to be vaccumed. I wish Sam did. He was a quite handsome cat. Great memories.

    1. He was and she will, Shelly.
      As they age they need us more and of course we are there for them. But that means that when they go the void is all the greater. I remember having so much less to do and wondering what do we do with all that time that we now have? I didn’t want to wait longer as we are also so much older and who knows how much time we have left ourselves!?
      Great memories indeed. A little weep and time to move onto another chapter, still keeping our warm memories.
      Thanks for the comment. XO

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