8/11/07

Growing up with cats...

A most affectionate street cat at the
Asian Civilizations Museum grounds...

My earliest memory is a litter of kittens in the old round rattan chair where my grandma used to sit. Since then, there is always a resident or master cat in our home. Of course, these cats were not house cats - they were free to roam wherever and whenever. They were independent individualists, and freedom was their modus operandi. One master cat (they were all called Vicky for some weird reason) has a "penthouse" in some crevice of our roof, and I believe it was his love nest! And the way they relaxed and stretched on lazy afternoons and evenings... It was all about making time your best friend based on an uncanny understanding of the more important things in life haha! Of course, there were times when the master cat had to stand up and be counted as he fought the odd enemy now and then to protect his territory (which is our house and slightly beyond). Towards the last years, he would disappear for long periods and returned three times (as the tale goes) to say goodbye by meowing from the garden. That was the last I've seen of him. Subsequently, I picked up one cat from the street on my way home (or he self-invited himself), and another I brought home from college in the bus! Perhaps my Catmasutra paintings are about capturing all those traits I believed (as a child) the cat has and which I hold dear. Wherever they are, cats seem capable of being happy and free-spirited!
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