Virgil The Houseboat Cat

I felt very sad hearing my friend Arthur had to put his kitty to sleep.  Apparently Virgil had stopped eating and was plainly suffering, with no clear diagnosis in sight.

“I made the decision I hope someone would make for me under the same circumstances, ” Arthur said.

It has to be the hardest thing to do, to let go of that loving creature who stood beside you through thick and thin…who never cared how you looked or what shape you came home in.

Makes a break-up feel like a paper cut.

Arthur, a rather stoic man, you can bet felt the loss down to his core Virg being his best buddy not to mention first mate.

There’s something rather romantic about two men living on a houseboat. Images of Errol Flynn in Captain Blood  images and Burt Lancaster as The Crimson Pirate come to mind.  images-1 I’m certain Arthur has dozens of women he has to beat off with a stick, or oar in his case.

I can see them all arriving in white pants, parkas and pumps (for that touch of high seas glamour) balancing cakes and casseroles.

I never met Virgil, but heard great stories about him…how he loved tuna, Starkist I believe, and liked to sun himself on deck, coming in and out at will. Must have been so much fun for him with Long Island Sound as his oyster. Of course when it rained it was a totally different story. Like any smart creature, Virgil preferred a cozy spot on Arthur’s bed to the raging sea any day.

I thought about the many pets I put down now resting in my armoire: Inky and Margie, Mittens, Missy and Boo all cremated placed in tiny white boxes that look like General Tso’s Chicken to go.

It’s hard saying good-bye, but like Arthur said, when it’s our time, rather than pain and torment the most humane thing would be to check out with dignity.

So Virgil kitty, wherever you’re docked on that big houseboat in the sky, we’re all thinking of you today. And if you run into Inky, Margie, Mittens, Missy or Boo (or Errol), tell them to behave themselves…tell them mama said so.     VirgilVirgil Seder


About Susannah Bianchi

I'm just a girl who likes to write slightly on slant. I've had a career in fashion, dabbled in film and to be honest, I don't like talking about myself. Now my posts are another matter so I will let them speak for themselves. My eBooks, A New York Diary, Model Behavior: Friends For Life and Notes From A Working Cat can be found on Thanks.
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16 Responses to Virgil The Houseboat Cat

  1. That’s quite sad. Non-pet owners couldn’t understand how much an animal can grow on you. It’s heartbreaking when they finally pass away, leaving a tiny hole in your heart.


    • Awe David, that was so well said. Yes, it’s very heartbreaking indeed. I’ve been through it so many times, but the alternative is, they outlive you, and I for one, wouldn’t want that. I’m always so in love with my animals.


  2. micklively says:

    You must be the world’s most hopeless romantic Susannah. Another lovely piece from you.
    Your comment about two men living on a houseboat was from a more innocent time, I feel. These days, everyone’s gaydar would be saying “pling”.
    Losing a old and trusted friend is always painful. Tomorrow is “Molly Day” in Chez Lively. It’s been nine years but I know there will be tears, just the same. Maeve and Molly were inseparable and, you may recall, Molly was Maeve’s bridesmaid.


  3. skinnyuz2b says:

    Susannah, a beloved pet is more than just a pet, they are companions. My Siamese, Monkey, was with me for almost 24 years. Before my honey, before four children. She tolerated them all as they entered our lives, one-by-one. She went to sleep while laying in my lap fifteen years ago this past January 13th.
    So sorry for Arthur and Virgil, as well as anyone who has that tiny hole in their heart.


    • 24 years? Is Monkey in the Guinness Book of World Records? Wow, that’s quite something Skinny. I guess I had Margie the longest. She was feral when I got her and would only tolerate me and my friend Joan. It was like having a lion in the house, but I sure did love her. She was quite a girl.


  4. katecrimmins says:

    Awww! I’m so sorry. I hate having to make that decision but it’s part of living and loving pets.


  5. oh, how sad. With Shugo approaching 91 in human years, 13 in dog years, I know this scene is coming upon us. I dread it. I loved this post today, thank you.. Are you staying warm?


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