To Celebrate Our Cat, Chaussettes

He left us with such happy memories and funny stories

Hello There. VivBounty here with a celebration of our kitten, Chaussettes' life. He came into our life for about 8 happy months. We cried for weeks after he was run over by a speeding car right outside our gate as he was coming home late one night. We grieved, along with our dog, his "brother", Pedro who looked for him under the bougainvillea bushes for ages after he was gone. I cried every time I heard a cat meow. In Spain, there is a bird which imitates a cat meowing so I cried a lot. Still, we have our happy memories to focus on.

Chaussettes, French for socks because of his white paws

We had him for 8 months, but our memories of him are vibrantly alive  years later
We had him for 8 months, but our memories of him are vibrantly alive years later

The fruitbowl and the bidet

In the glare of the afternoon Spanish sun, Chaussettes sleeps in the fuitbowl
In the glare of the afternoon Spanish sun, Chaussettes sleeps in the fuitbowl
A very Spanish cat, he loved the bidet
A very Spanish cat, he loved the bidet

Falling Asleep in the Funniest Spots

I wish to share some of our wonderful times with Chaussettes. He was pretty, affectionate, had such character and quirkiness. He used to come dashing in through the window at night after his wander through the neighbourhood and look for me. As nights were cool in the fall and winter even on the Costa del Sol, his paws were cold and he would hop up on my lap for a cuddle to warm up and settle in for the night.

Here in a little tribute to one of our kitty therapists as I believe pets calm your energy and come to you, like people for a time, a season, and when you've done for each other what you came together to do, you each move on into another cycle.

He used to fall asleep in the funniest places. Like most cats, he loved a sunbeam. Once when the fruit bowl was empty, I found him asleep in it, in a sunbeam on the dining table. Talk about a "kodak moment"!

Then one day I run into the bathroom, at the last minute, as one does to find him curled up in the bidet, one of my favourite fixtures in Spain, and obviously Chaussettes, too.

I Tried to Plant a Chili Tree Once

Chaussettes had a favourite spot in the rock garden. I grew some chili plants from seeds I had collected from around the world. Some were from my Mum's Indian grocer in Toronto, some were from my cousin's plant in Mexico, some were from a neighbour 2 doors down and some were from my plants in Pittsburgh, PA. 

Once the chili trees were about 2 feet tall, I was transplanting them into the garden. As I got to Chaussettes favourite spot and started digging, a friend stopped to chat over the garden wall so I downed my tools and sat on the ground. 

Chaussettes came dashing through my bent arm, continued digging where I had broken ground, and right there in front of my friend, with me sitting right beside the whole had a wee in it and covered it up, as if to say "That's my spot"! 

I later planted the chili tree when another friend stopped by to chat at the garden gate. This time Pedro dug up the tree in support of Chaussettes. Funnily enough, they left the other 8 chili trees right where I had planted them. They just seemed to take exception to me putting on in Chaussettes spot in the rock garden. 

His Rock Garden

His spot where he would not allow me to plant a chili tree
His spot where he would not allow me to plant a chili tree

Play time and nap time

Chaussettes exhausted
Chaussettes exhausted
A gentle tussle before napping
A gentle tussle before napping
Playing inside
Playing inside


It wasn't long before Chaussettes and Pedro were "brothers". They chased each other around the garden, under bougainvillea bushes and around the sisal plants, miraculously without either poking an eye out on the thorns. After all that dashing about, there was always time for a cuddle and a nap on the verandah sofa.

A gangster cat followed Chaussettes in through the window late one night

We would leave the window a jar if Chaussettes had not come in before we slept at night. When he ate, the spice carousel would rattle signalling his return, one of us would get up and shut the window. One night the spice rack's rattle sounded different to me. It was faster and more urgent. My husband had already shut the window.

So I wake up again, just noticing as I left the bedroom that both my pets were at my side and the spice rack was still rattling. As I reached the living room I saw a cat, similar in colour to mine but with no white fur and wearing a spikey collar. I recognize this to be the gangster cat that scratched a neighbour's dog's eye sending him to the vet. I look back toward the bedroom to see Pedro and Chaussettes quaking in the doorway, dash back shutting them safely in the bedroom I wake my husband and tell him that's not our cat out there.

He heads out calmly wearing not much more than his socks, I hear a guttural growl, and the front door shut and he's back in less than 2 minutes mumbling that as long as the cat has an escape and doesn't feel cornered, it will just leave.

The memories remain and even give us a chuckle now

One morning Chaussettes went out the window and brought us back a gift in the form of a little bird. We woke up startled by this bird dive-bombing us, Pedro, the gentle giant dashing out into the living room terrified, the bird was eventually cornered by Chaussettes behind the wicker laundry basket. Hubby was not too concerned this time and sleepily grunted when I said there's a bird in the house, please let it out. So eventually I got up, opened the bedroom window, pulled the basket forward and it flew out the window. I learned from the gangster cat incident not to try to catch the "visitor".

Another day he got stuck in a tree and I could hear this meowing outside the window. I sent my hubby out there and he could not reach him, climbing up on the low wall holding on to the wrought iron fence around the neighbour's house. He couldn't get in the locked gate so eventually he drove the car up on to the sidewalk, climbed on top of the car roof until he could reach the top of the tree where Chaussettes was stuck to lift him down.

A couple of nights it was getting late so hubby went out to look for him. seeing him in the next housing complex, walled, fenced and gated he called out to him. He meowed back walking along, calling out all the way along the the wall until they reached the gate, leading his "dad" all the way to an undeveloped field. My hubby is not a walker and was none to pleased to be doing this at 2 a.m. The third time it happened, he just hopped onto a car, right back over the fence on to our side of the wall, and hubby thought "he can get in and out whenever he likes, no need to worry about him". Chaussettes must've seen these nights and walks with dad.

A bit disgruntled

We returned from an overnight to find a disgruntled Chaussettes
We returned from an overnight to find a disgruntled Chaussettes

This cat had great facial expressions. Once when we went inland overnight to visit friends, we took Pedro and left him with a good food and water supply and a clean litter pan out through a grill door to a small walled in patio for plenty of fresh air. He was peacefully sleeping when we left but when we came back his ears were straight out to the side like Yoda from Star Wars, really scowling and creating a racket to show his dismay.

We had given the vet advance notice Chaussettes had adopted us and he said, "Yes that's what they do"! We said he had stayed the longest of all the cats and as soon as he was old enough, we would bring him to be neutered. Sadly we didn't get that chance, but our vet said, the statistics are that outdoor cats in Spain live an average of 2 years whereas indoor cats live an average of 20 years.

We could not have turned this cat into an indoor cat, as he came to us while roaming, calmed our energy, put us in touch with our Being, saw us through some difficult decisions and made leaving Spain an easier one. 

Prosperous Blessings, 

Fantastic Travel

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C.L. Norris profile image

C.L. Norris 7 years ago

Wonderful story, beautiful job, brought tears to my eyes, thank you for sharing your memories.

VivBounty profile image

VivBounty 7 years ago from Canada Author

Thank you C.L. Norris for your sweet comment. I'm so pleased my story touched you.

TrudyVan profile image

TrudyVan 6 years ago from South Africa

Hello there VivBounty, Lovely hub and well written. I could ralate to what you wrote. Thank you for sharing your story with us.

VivBounty profile image

VivBounty 6 years ago from Canada Author

Hello There TrudyVan. Thank you for your comment. Yes, I know you can relate to this story. You are a wonderfully empathic person. It was very therapeutic to share it with you and this wonderful community of writers and pet-lovers.

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