A Cat Called Lucky
Chokdi Means Lucky in Thai
Okay, we all know that there are cat people and there are dog people and when it comes to their favorite four legged friend never the twain shall meet. But there are those who love both – the cog or the dat people, I guess, depending on which kind of furry friend was first in their household.
Much as I love dogs, I have always had cats. Even my very first feline friend gave birth to her kits in my bed when I was only three years old.
I arrived in Tenerife in 2000 from Thailand already kitted out (boom boom) with two furry friends that I brought with me. The venerable Boodle (originally Kitten Caboodle) who lived to a ripe old 22 years and Chokdi, whose name meant Lucky in Thai, but who was one of the unluckiest creatures I have ever come across.
An Unlucky Kitten From the Start
Chokdi and her littermates had been thrown from a three storey window on to the roof of the outside cludgie of my Bangkok local bar, ‘Cheap Charlie’s’. Chokdi was perhaps the least appealing because no one had wanted her and while all the others had been spirited away by C.C. regulars, Chokdi was left in a cardboard box behind the bar. I took the little scrap home.
In the first week it turned out that she had entropion (in-turned eyelashes) -ouch! and a fracture in a back leg – not that it seemed to slow her down any. She got stuck behind the oven and stranded mewling at the top of the curtains on a regular basis.
At first very scared and nervous, over time she became a loud and bossy family member with a short, bright tortoiseshell coat and long legs.
When we went on holiday, the cats went into the care of a local vet. Apart from being mightily pee’d off with us for leaving her there, Boodle was fine, fat, lazy Fergus was just delighted to be taken home to his own food dish but poor Chokdi had been struck by a dreadful skin infection. Her beautiful soft fur was peeling off in long, raw tatters, her ears had begun to disintegrate and she was covered in gentian violet. Had we been much longer the vet said, he would have put Chokdi down.
At home with us she recovered slowly although it took a long time and her ears never looked right again. We called her ‘the cat with the frilly ears’ from then on. Not that she cared. She was as brash and bossy as ever.
A New Home
When we left Thailand, we made the sad decision not to bring Fergus. He was a nervous and fearful cat and the trip would have demanded too much of him. As a cat-loving friends moved into the apartment, we left Fergus in her care and they got on famously.
Boodle and Chokdi cats settled into their new home very quickly and neither were phased by the addition of a puppy a couple of months later. Everything was great for a year or so until the night Chokdi got sick. I had been laughing at her chasing a butterfly in the morning but by the evening, she was not playful at all. She had ingested some form of poison and within three days, Chokdi’s bright light had gone out.
My poor soi baby had been through a lot in her short life. She had been loved but she was not lucky and after her, I promised I would never again tempt fate by giving that name, in any language, to any of my four legged friends.