Transferring from a bona fide nurturing Montessori classroom into a traditional Catholic first grade proved a traumatic experience for Anjelica. I was going through a divorce and could no longer afford the suddenly doubling of the Montessori school’s tuition. Her cat Sparkle represented a safe haven from the trials and daily grind of traditional schooling. Each day when we opened the backdoor, Sparkle stood ready to greet Anjelica with a hearty “awaaaao”. Anjelica would scoop up Sparkle in her arms and off they went to Anjelica’s room, returning for an after-school snack and glass of milk. Sparkle slept with Anjelica nightly and shared her other pillow. “Bitty Kitty” as Anjelica nicknamed her, had an affinity for walking around the rim of the bathtub as Anjelica splashed in a bubble bath. At dinnertime, Sparkle graced the chair next to Anjelica. These two were inseparable.
Sparkle participated in family birthdays and holidays. One memorable Thanksgiving, I set the pumpkin pie on the table, but had to retrieve a utensil from the kitchen. I returned to the dining room just in time to witness Sparkle leaving one perfect paw print in the center of the pumpkin pie! Christmas wrapping never failed to piqué Sparkle’s interest. Diving into the bow box was practically an Olympic sport for her. That cats were present at the birth of the Baby Jesus, Sparkle doubted it not.
Sparkle followed movement closely on the television computer screens. For her viewing pleasure, a nip of salty potato chip satisfied Sparkle’s human food cravings, along with bits of seafood, chicken, cheese tortellini, and Italian meatballs. Anjelica’s sweet-natured cat was nothing if not eclectic in her gourmet food choices. Sparkle was quite the gourmand gatta.
Ciao for now.