This week’s blog comes to you from Sanctuary volunteer Nicholas Read.
Ordinarily long-time volunteer Brigid Coult would be writing this entry, but since it’s partly about her, she’s had to step away this week. Not that she approves; she’s too modest for that. But her love story with Elvis, a brown adult tabby more reminiscent of the overweight ‘70s King than the sleek leather-clad ‘60s singer, is one that deserves to be told.
Every cat at RAPS knows he or she has a special friend in Brigid, but her relationship with Elvis was something extraordinary. “Was” because Elvis has been adopted by a family who were looking for a calm and cuddly cat. And Elvis fit the bill perfectly. The trouble was that fitting that bill meant saying good-bye to Brigid.
You see, theirs wasn’t just any love story. It was a “compare thee to a summer’s day”, “let me count the ways” romance initiated and perpetuated by a besotted and forever faithful Elvis. (Check out the accompanying photo and you’ll see for yourself.)
He adored Brigid, plain and simple. When she wasn’t working, he was nestled under her chin wearing an expression of pure “she’s mine” bliss. The funny thing was that because his head was pressed so tightly against hers, Brigid couldn’t see that blissed out expression herself. But everyone else could and they’d never seen anything like it. Elvis was head-over-paws in Hallmark love.
But Elvis’s new family met him and also fell in love – and when they came to visit the following weekend, Brigid got a chance to meet them, and knew that they were the right people for him. She knew Elvis was a cat who needed cuddling every day and every night, which was more than even she could give him as a volunteer.
It was RAPS’s other volunteers whose hearts broke. Nothing would be the same again, they said, without Brigid and Elvis. It would be like Cathy without Heathcliff, Elizabeth without Mr. Darcy, Lucy without Ricky.
But wisdom says if you really love someone, set him free. So that’s what Brigid did for Elvis. It doesn’t mean she won’t miss him. She just knew it was the right thing … and it was.