Soon after we had got married my wife suggested that we should have a cat. As a great admirer of the feline creatures, I jumped at the chance and promised to get her one. When searching for a cat we bumped into Mr and Mrs H, a couple from Holland who were breeders of the Balinese breed (long hair Siamese). They happened to have a new-born Balinese which we fell in love with at first sight. When the little hair ball was 3 months old, we brought it home and gave it a new name - Mui Mui.
As the only kitten in the litter and having seen more men and women, boy and girls than other cats, Mui Mui was deeply convinced that she was a member of the human race. She was very attached to us. Every evening if I was not home by 9 p.m., she would become agitated. If we went on vacation, I had to call back home every now and then to talk to her, or she would refuse to eat. When we were happy, she was happy; when we were sad, she knew. She was always interested in the books that we were reading (as if she could read) and food that we were eating. I once put a glass of red wine in front of her. After some hesitation she gave it a try. And, I can't describe it. You have to see it yourself to believe that a cat is capable of making such a face - eyes squeezed to a line, whiskers pulled to the front and mouth pulled back. Very funny indeed.
Mui Mui was some 4 to 5 years old when our daughter was born. She was the most wonderful elder sister. Whatever our daughter did to her (poking her ears, pulling her tail, throwing toys at her), she would never fight back. When her younger sister was asleep, Mui Mui would sit next to her, guarding her, not making a sound. When she was awake, she would jump to the living room and meowed to us, commanding one of us to attend to her immediately.
Mui Mui passed away some three years ago. Sad. All good things will come to an end, won't they? We thought of keeping another cat, but, as our daughter turned out to be allergic to all other cats, we had to give up the idea. Our daughter loves dogs. Ever since she was able to read she has been reading everything about dogs, from dog breeds to dog training to dog history. I dare say that our daughter is one of the least materialistic girls. She never asked for anything, be it toys, modern gadgets, new cloths or new school bags (I guess she is the only student at her school who use the very same school bag from grade 1 through grade 5). So, when she asked for a puppy we found it hard to say no. Because of her allergy and asthmatic tendency, poodle appeared to be the only breed open to us (I'm not Obama and can't order someone to find me a non-shedding Portuguese water dog). We then found her a poodle...
I once said that I did not want a kid in my life. It turns out that I am a happy father. I also said that I hated small dogs like poodle and Yorkshire terrier. Now, I have a tiny poodle sitting next to me as I am typing this. Never say never.