Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Email, bullfrogs and turnips

On Tuesday when the Peep awoke, she didn’t even bother get up. She just lay where she’d cried herself to sleep last night. Miss Rudy came in to check on her and found her signing, with her head on her pays. “Peep, you can’t just giv up!” Miss Rudy said. “The Daddy promised up that the Mommy would come home. I trust the daddy, don’t you?”

“Oh, just leave me alone to my misery, Rudy,” Peep whispered.

Rudy slunk away, not sure how to respond to that. What should she doe? Rudy munched some crunchies and thought about the problem. There had to be some way to reassure Peep that the Mommy would come home. If Peep wouldn’t believe the Daddy, who would she believe? Then it occurred to her – the yarn lady! She’d sent an email to the yarn lady when they were afraid that Mommy would go away and get new cats, and the yarn lady had talked to Mommy and wrote back. Rudy decided to send her an email.

Most cats don’t have email accounts, but Miss Rudy did. The yarn lady had set it up for her so that she could send the Mommy a Mother’s Day card. It was really cool – it had all their names on it. LT didn’t like to admit it, but in her own way Miss Rudy was as smart as he was. She could read (if it wasn’t too hard) and type. Her typing was pretty slow, because she used the on-screen keyboard that the yarn lady had showed her. Keyboards were not designed for cats in mind – but Rudy was a whiz with a mouse. She giggled every time she thought about using a mouse to type, as though she were holdig a poor squeaking mouse in her jaws and making him press the keys with his nose. “You know, that wouldn’t be a bad idea,” thought Rudy, “if I could keep myself from eating the mouse, that is.” She giggled again.

Once the Daddy was out of the house Miss Rudy went to work composing her email.

Peep Miss Rudy and LT to adlp

Peep is worried that Mommy will nevr come home. Can you tel us when shell be come & how to cheer hur up?

Miss Rudy

Although it was a short message, it took her an hour to get onto gmail, compose the message and send it. Now she just needed to wait for an anwer. All that typing made her hungry, so she headed back for more crunchies.

Peep was still lying in the same spot Rudy had left her, so Rudy headed outside. She found LT in the front yard, staring at the lily pond. “LT, can you help me with the Peep? She won’t get up?”
“I know,” said LT. “I tried to get her up to come frog hunting with me, but no luck. She’s too depressed. I don’t think she even ate this morning.”

“Well – tell her that she needs to count today in the secret spot she’s recording her scratches. If she doesn’t do it as soon as she gets up each day we’ll never know how long it’s been and when Mommy will come home.” Rudy pled with LT, since it looked like he’d much rather try to catch the frog.

“I’ll get around to it – a few hours without food won’t hurt Peep. If she gets hungry enough she’ll get up.” LT said this without breaking his stare at the pond. “That frog kept me awake last nigh and I’d like to have a come to Jesus meeting with him.”

Miss Rudy giggled at the thought of LT pinning the bullfrog and having a talk with him. None of them like to eat frogs – who would? – but sometimes they could be fun to catch. “Whatever,” and Rudy sauntered towards the woods.

After a refreshing nap, buried deep in leaf litter to keep cool, Miss Rudy checked the email account. “Eek!” she cried. There were 46 new emails. Sixteen of them wanted to find her a job, twelve promised to make her taller, ten offered her instant credit, seven were for catnip by mail without a human’s help and the last was from the yarn lady. “Yeesh, I need to check my email more often,” Rudy decided.

Hi Rudy,

Ande here. I talk to Mary Rose every day and she always says how much she misses you guys, especially the Peep. She'll be home in about two months to be with you all again. She never would have left if the internship hadn’t been so important. NASA! Imagine your Mommy smart enough to work at NASA! Don't worry about her, she's fine. Give LT and Peep a hug for me.

Love ya,

“Month? What the heck is a month?” thought Rudy as she printed the email. She sprang to the top of the cabinet, batted the printed page to the floor and followed it there. Picking up the paper with her teeth she proudly brought it inot the living room and ran out to get LT.

LT was still watching the lily pond, but was now lying beneath a tree, as the sun was too hot on his dark tabby back. “Any luck?” Rudy asked.

“Nope – thought I saw two eyes earlier, but they were just algae bubbles. Daddy really needs to clean this pond. The algae is growing fungus, or mold or slime. Brrrr. Whatever it is, it’s gross.” LT shuddered when he thought how it had felt when he’d jabbed his paw in the water, only to have it come out empty and slightly green.

“Never mind! I have an email back from the yarn lady about Mommy – come in and we’ll talk to the Peep,” and Rudy tried to hustle him inside.

“Nope, you handle this one,” LT said, tail lashing. “I’m not leaving until I see this frog.”

Sighing, Rudy went in. “Peep – wake up! I just got an email from the yarn lady about Mommy!” She read a listless Peep the message and waited for a response.

“Well, that’s something. She does miss me, but why did she need to go to Virginia for turnips? I thought NASA had to do with rockets, not vegetables.” Peep was clearly confused, probably caused by Miss Rudy’s inability to read or understand the word ‘internship’. Miss Rudy substituted the word ‘turnip’, as she felt they were probably similar.

“The Mommy is obviously growing very important turnips, Peep. They will probably eat them on the moon, with the green cheese. Come on, get up and eat. And if you don’t mark today really soon, I’m going to find your place and mark it for you. “ Rudy was sounding very authoritarian right now, and Peep didn’t much like it.

“Okay, Miss Big Bossy Rudy!” and she streaked into the kitchen where she browsed her way through half the remaining crunchies. Only when Rudy had settled down for a nap did she sneak off and mark the next scratch, though. It was her job, and no one else’s.

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