Tag: Kuma

Read More

What Kuma Leaves Behind

Four years ago today we lost Kuma, our Maine Coon. He lived a short, full life over 18 months—from near-death abandonment; to adoption; to surgery removing nearly two-dozen hair ties; to being hit by a car; to roaming the neighborhood as the friendly but dominant male cat.

We don’t know what happened to our boy, although coyote kill is likeliest explanation. I hadn’t considered the risk, but there is a canyon close by and the females breed this time of year and come out looking to feed. So accustomed to dogs, an indoor/outdoor California cat wouldn’t necessarily perceive danger. On Jan. 31, 2012, city workers clearing brush in a canyon found Kuma’s collar, which IKEA cat has worn since.

Read More

Remembering Kuma

This date, three years ago, was a Sunday. Kuma loudly meowed, demanding to go outdoors, earlier than usual. He was untypically agitated, pacing around the front door and sliding glass that opened onto a small balcony. I usually let him out after first light—sometimes as early as 6:30 but usually not before 7, and I started the trek with him into the back alley.

But this day, I broke routine, letting him out at six, into darkness. He went alone. I vividly recall the majestic Maine Coon looking up at me, making eye contact—as if to say “You’re not coming with me today?”—before slipping out our apartment complex’s back gate. I never saw him again. 

Read More

Meet Cali

On October 20, my daughter’s cat Cali moved into the Wilcox domicile, where she and our other feline Neko slowly, but surely, adapt to one another. The kitty is the second to adopt my now college-age child and chance for some redemption for the first.

I met Cali on a pleasant summer evening in early June. Molly—that’s my daughter—moved into a group house, and I had just dropped off a last load of belongings. As I crossed the street to the car, a slim Tortoiseshell cat approached down the sidewalk. She raised her head to receive pats, just as a San Diego State University senior approached. He and I chatted about education and careers for about 15 minutes. Then we parted from one another and our new feline friend. 

Read More

So Long, Lou Lou

At one time, our little corner of San Diego had two neighborhood cats, Maine Coon Kuma and black beauty, with speck of white, Lou Lou. They lived in the same apartment complex, separated by one door, and sauntered about and inside each other’s alcove; we and Lou Lou’s owners always left a door open for our indoor-outdoor felines.

Lou Lou tolerated Kuma, at whom she hissed devilishly whenever he approached, swatting as her head pulled back. He never attacked, though, merely invaded her space. Kuma was a gentle giant.

Read More

Abducted by UFO Cats

In the days after Kuma disappeared on Jan. 15, 2012, I often said to neighbors: “He disappeared like abducted by aliens”. One minute the cat was there, then he was gone. We’re now reasonably sure that coyotes abducted Kuma, whose collar city workers miraculously found deep in a canyon not far from our apartment (fifteen days later).

Out of nowhere, my wife made similar yet very different connection this morning. She likes to think that a UFO took our cat, and that two earlier one-day disappearances were abductions preparing him for the final trip. She doesn’t really believe aliens took Kuma, but it comforts her to think he might be alive somewhere else having grand adventures.