Sunday, November 5, 2023

Foley's Tails From Rainbow Bridge: Surrendering to a Hand of Kindnes


I remembered Pancho, primarily by his smell, which would come wafting up from the heat grate as he and Ugly Joan were hiding in the crawl space from the elements, snuggling, and, I am not a prude, probably doing something more.

While inspecting the house this week, I saw Pancho slowly walking across the yard, pausing several times to take deep breaths. His gait was stiff, his back raised. I recognized it. I had even lived it. Pancho's song was ending.

He could see my spirit, and he hissed, but I assured him I meant no harm and was sorry to see him in such dire straits.

"You are probably enjoying this," he said.

I assured him it was furthest from my mind. I would leave it like that, but I could not watch a soul, even a former interloper, suffer.

I knew my parents would help him if he let them, which he refused to do, saying about relying on help from a human after these years: "That will be the day."

I tried to prevent what happened next but could not: The rain came, then the cold. Pancho could not take more than six steps without stopping to rest. Finally, and fittingly, he settled in the second chance garden.

I ghosted my dad and whispered to him that it was a lovely day to cut up some of the branches stored in the second-chance garden. Being very susceptible to suggestions, he agreed.

After removing some branches and cutting them, the fluffy grey Tom caught his eye. He was surprised Pancho had not run at his appearance, and then he worried the cat had ceased breathing.

But Pancho still had a few heartbeats to spare. Daddy knelt next to him and could tell Pancho was ready to pass over. Daddy sat with Pancho for a while, not wanting to leave him alone. He then tried to call Animal Control and the shelter but didn't get an answer.

Daddy didn't want to leave Pablo. He tried to help him cross over (and avoid Pablo making one final lunge under the house and expiring there). He went into the shed and got Ruby's travel bag. He knew he had to move quickly and not cause Pancho to run or Ruby to see her bag being defiled.

When Pancho saw the bag, he knew Daddy's intention and tried to run, but in the end, cornered, and with heartbeats fading, he surrendered to a human after a lifetime of avoiding them.

Pancho took his first and last car ride to the shelter, where the Animal Control Officer was enjoying the fall day and eating a sandwich. He recognized Pancho immediately. The cat had avoided capture for years, but the officer, too, had no joy in his capture. Daddy told Pancho he was going to a better place and left the man to aid Pancho to a better life.

I met him when he crossed over, and he was met by many feral friends who had preceded him. I told him we could find a human to take him, but he said not yet. When I went to sleep, Pancho was in the garden enjoying the moonlight and was doing the same with the sunlight when I awoke.

I did not mind him being there; he could stay with us as long as he wanted. We were the closest thing he had to a family, and he will always be one of us.

That is what happens when you help an angel get his wings: They are yours forever.


  1. That's very sad about dear Pancho but he so deserves to be an Angel.

  2. Your dad did a great thing by helping Pancho when he needed it most.

  3. That Wass vert=y very sad about Pancho but I am gad he had someone to help him at the end. His precious heart must hav been failing. Thank you and thanks to your Dad. XX

  4. Many healing hugs to Pancho and thanks to your dad for his kindness
    Hugs cecilia

  5. what a beautiful tribute to Pancho love Dallas and Belle


Monday Question

 What is the oldest thing in your house that has been used by pets long before you moved into the house, and do you still use it?   Ruby'...