Wednesday, September 07, 2005

How food became family. Oh, and a Katrina story also...

A lighter story of Katrina, this from Sister Anne of the Daughters of St. Paul.
My own extended family is safe, with the exception of a cousin in Bay St. Louis, MS, whom we have still not heard from. For the first time in his life, my Dad (age 75) evacuated for a hurricane. He and Mom were picked up by my brother Thomas at midnight last Sunday morning, and by 5:00 had arrived at Thomas’ in-laws in Monroe (far north Louisiana). They were followed in a kind of caravan by my two single sisters, Jane and Nell, with their respective pets. All together, the three vehicles contained two men, four women, one child (Thomas’ 17-month-old daughter Kate), FIVE dogs (four of them quite large) and three cats. (These would be joined on Thursday by another woman (my niece Erin), two dachshunds, another cat or two and a rat named Charley, but that is a story in itself...

Oh, and you want to know about Charley, the rat. Charley is
Erin’s pet, only he didn’t start out as a pet. Erin has two
pet snakes (ball pythons) and the rat was lunch. Only this rat
didn’t take kindly to the idea, and bit the snake into whose
cage he was dropped. My niece grabbed the rat and plopped it
in a handy cage (this is a girl who works at a veterinary
hospital, mind you), then took her snake to the vet for a shot
and to get its wound irrigated. When she got home, she
wondered what to do with the rat. Try to feed it to the snake
again? But her mother told her, “The thing is in a cage. It is
now a pet. It earned its freedom.” So, Charley (as in
Algernon) is a free rat. Except for the cage. "

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