After the cat's week-long illness, and my sleeping on the floor to keep it company at night (on the floor partly because I didn't want the cat to fall on the hard tiles but also because it is so hard to clean cat piss out of a matress) the cat has died. This is not the first cat death. But no less painful for that.
To the childless middle-aged, a cat can take on an immense significance.
An observation: The dead cat was still not cold. As it lay on the white sheet covering the sofa you could see the fleas leaving en masse. Clearly, if you are a cat, you know you are dead when you see your fleas abandoning you.
An observation and a complaint: People say things like: "Cats get sick and die," or: "Think what it must be like for parents who lose, not kittens, but children," or: "Life goes on," or: "The Lord giveth and the Lord taketh away." Why do people parrot inanities?
Everyone believes their misery is unique. They ought to be allowed to carry on thinking of it as unique and not be told by fools that their misery is really only a pale shade of a much richer misery felt by other people.
There are times when it seems that the greatest evil is to say to someone: "There are people far worse off than you."