Saturday, July 11, 2009


Florence loved boxes. She would try her best to fit into a box, though smaller than her :)

Whenever I sat on the sofa watching tv, she would also sat next to me waited patiently until late night, and even she's sleepy she quickly opened her eyes when I turned to her.

Always tried her best to fit her body on the chair..

She liked to lie on the bed just like all of us, human.. Placing her head on the pillow..

I adopted her from an Australian family 14 years ago. She was 3 years old then. They put her up for adoption because they're going back to Australia. She's a local cat, short hair. I was staying with my sister, Andak and her family at that time. It took her a year to accept us as her new family. From the first day we brought her home, she moved in the house avoiding us as much as she can, sneaked here and there to ensure we were no where near her.

Tried to change her name - well 'Florence' is not a common cat's name for us in Malaysia. But, she had her own mind and only responded to Florence. And she won :)

When I first stayed on my own (rented a room in a house), I didn't bring her along as there were other tenants in the house. Never thought she would reacted badly to my decision. She 'ran away' long after I moved out from sister's house, and I went to look for her immediately after my sister couldn't find her. She came back one day, while I was at my sister's house looking ofr her, skinny and looked like someone had locked her up (there's mark around her neck). Since then, both of us never separated.

She was my best friend forever (BFF). Always there for me, waited for me. She would push my arm slowly with her head if I didn't wake up in the morning despite the alarm screaming. Once I was off from the bed, she would take my place there, placed head on the pillow and watched me getting ready.

I called her Lady-of-Leisure as she won't lie down on floor unless it's covered, didn't be friend to cat (we used to say that perhaps she didn't think that she's a cat), always clean and never fell sick.

On that fateful weekend, I left her at home as I was a volunteer for a motivation week organised for few orphanage homes by my friend. I left home on that Friday, 18 March 2007 and came home on Sunday, 20th. My nephew, Joe looked after her that weekend. Of all the time, she chosed to fall sick for first time that weekend, when I wasn't around. She looked weak and reserved when I came home. My nephew said she vomited few times that weekend and was not so responsive when he called for her.

Sent sent her to clinic next day and was diagnosed with fever. That night noticed that her skin was yellowish, rushed her to clinic again next day and she was then diagnosed with jaundice. She was dripped. We immediately bought goat milk for her from a Malay family in Ulu Langat (though the clinic said it's not really a cure for jaundice, but no harm trying). However, the milk was so 'cair' and no effect after nearly a week. Perhap the seller cheated us. She didn't urinate since she fell sick and that made us more worried. My sister then bought another goat milk from an elderly Chinese lady in Setapak whom she used to buy before. After she was fed with that goat milk, she kept urinate and each time a lot - thick yellow urine. But by then she's also getting weaker, not moving most of the time, didn't eat her biscuit (we had to manually fed her with wet food instead) and hardly drink. Her movement was extremely slow. She was under my sister care since the day she fell sick, as I was working. My daily routine was rushed to my sister house after office, went home only late night or before Subuh.

As her condition deteriorated (she urinate wherever she was, not at her 'toilet' - it's like she didn't realise that she urinate), I had no send to a nearby vet for further care - blood test, ultra-sound etc. Her medical report showed that her jaundice was improving, red blood cell also improving but there's stone in her kidney. Due to her weak condition, they couldn't operate her to take the stone out. We visited her daily.

On Friday, 6 April 2007 we received call that our grandfather was seriously ill and warded. We visited Florence at the vet before we left for kampung. That night we slept at kampung and came back to KL on Sunday, 8 April. Before we reached the vet, I saw a stall selling rattans and stopped to buy a 'baby-crib' for Florence. When we reached the vet, she greeted us - her voice so weak and we were so touched that she recognised us still. We were advised that yesterday not long after we left her, they lost her. She was found lying on her side, not moving and no heart beat. Thank God they managed to bring her back (or else I didn't know how I would have reacted). I was so angry because they didn't call us when it happened and discharged her immediately, despite the vet protest. I rather she's with me, her family, if that happened again. We placed her in the crib, brought her back to my sister's house, fed her and then she took a nap.

After 2 hours she woke up, time to feed her again before she took her medicine. And that was when she took her last breath. She was in her crib during her last 3 breaths - exactly like us, human (never in my life I witness such moment, not even when my father passed away in August 2006). That was the most heart-breaking moment for me. At that moment, I lost my best friend, my baby, my housemate. Felt like half of me gone, a big hole was left in my heart, my life felt so empty. My brother-in-law quietly went to the back of the block and made preparation for the burial. My sister followed suit, and I was left alone with her to say my goodbye. Not until I was ready to let her go, she was placed in her 'persemadian' forever before Maghrib. We planted a jackfruit tree on her grave, as her tombstone. She was 12 years old, and had been with me for 9 years. We used to say that she was little sister to my niece, Esha and big sister to Qis because when we adopted her - she was 3 years old whereas Esha was 4 and Qis was 2.

During the burial, my sister's neighbour came to bury their baby boy's 'uri', born that afternoon. There's a saying that every soul that left us, a new one is born. Perhaps it's true, even for Florence.

Until this very moment, I still shed tears whenever her memory cross my mind.

Florence, Tam love you so much and will always miss you.

P.S. My grandfather passed away on 28 April 2007, 3 weeks after we buried Florence.


Fi-sha said...

Dear Lady Florenz

A tale about Florenz never fails to make me cry...

I pray one day the huge 'hole' in your heart is 'filled' with 'the masterpiece' that perfectly fit.

ironteeth said...

Teringat Florenz yang sangat gebu & manja itu. Tapi sekarang Garfield dan Manja pun dah makin besar, dah nak jadi segebu Florenz.

Takpa Olie, Florenz akan tunggu tuan dia yang sangat baik ni kat sana.

Mia's Mom said...

Salam Lady Florenz,

Well, that managed to shed a few tears of mine.. the very dear beloved Florenz... well she stays in our memory for a very long time, ya.

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