The Kelp of the Wild

Continued From: "Kitty Kitty Bang Bang," part of a thread beginning with "Remembering Professor Kelp"

Kelp enjoyed the outdoors, but only in small doses.

He seldom ventured more than 15 feet from the house. A lifeguard was always on duty.

I was pleased to protect him, of course, but he wouldn't wait for me to put on my floaties.

Usually, Monsieur Kelp would be content to sniff and snoop and, maybe, putter in his garden.

One afternoon, Donna decided to escort young Kelp on an excursion around the perimeter of our home. The cat had barely begun the tour, when he leaped into the air like a mad kangaroo in a frenzy.

It was autumn and the unfamiliar sounds of Donna stepping onto crisp fallen leaves put the poor boy into a panic. He was strapped inside a recommended pet harness for his safety and he nearly strangled himself in the desperate effort to get free and away from those frightening noises, much like me with the lullabies of Yoko Ono.

That was an upsetting episode for all involved. So much so, more than a decade would pass before Kelp was comfortable in the yard during fall and winter seasons.

He'd dash outside for a short, medicinal gnaw on grass, then retreat inside to spew a little greenery-induced fur ball fun.

In 20 years, Kelp never grasped he could barf and potty outside. He'd take it all indoors.

Special memories. And a hundred bucks for a lifetime of Bounty towels, "the Kelper picker-upper."

As an elderly cat, he was content to sunbathe on the lawn. Kelp's eyes had become very sensitive to light, but he'd close his lids, point his face skyward, and enjoy a few moments in the warmth.

Having had his fill, Kelp would stand, waddle up the steps to the door, and head back to work.

"Kelp on Ice"
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