Doucine

Doucine, with her egyptian khôl-circled eyes...

We will look together later, in another post, at whether animals can in any way be part of our reincarnational process…

But today let me simply introduce you to Doucine, the lady-cat who has decided to grace my home with her very feminine and elegant presence, and my heart with her sweet friendship.
She came in about twelve years ago, when my tom-cat was still alive and well. She just entered the house as if it were the most natural thing to do and went straight to my cat resting there on the floor. He normally wouldn’t let any other cat in, but no problem at all with that one, so I thought ‘Uh-oh… those two seem to be quite friendly!!! I better watch out for kittens soon!…’
Very soon indeed: a few days only later, the cleaning young lady, working in the guest-room upstairs, suddenly let out a little shrill cry, then a hearty laugh, and then she called me up: in the far depths of a low shelf she had just discovered three adorable kittens, still tiny, but already quite loud in the minuscule ‘meows’ that had alerted her to their presence, and got them found out!…
When the lady-cat had come three days before, it had not been at all to first meet with my cat as I had thought: she had actually come to bring their new-born babies to safety in my house!!!
And for the next few weeks I watched with delight the whole demonstration of how a mamma cat cares for her young, including the gradual training to go out of that room that had been at first their entire universe, and then adventuring around the whole upstairs space (luckily my own little room could be made off bonds!), and then one fine day everyone tumbling downstairs and joyously invading every nook and corner there as well…! My poor tom-cat, his quiet life totally upset by the three little devils constantly pulling at him, biting his tail, climbing on his back and rolling off it, was bearing everything patiently, but from time to time he would look up to me with helplessness in his eyes… Doucine, as I had called the young mamma, lying idly nearby, was watching the whole scene serenely and contentedly… just as I, the ‘grand-ma’, was from my sofa or my desk, enjoying thoroughly those happy family moments I was unexpectedly given to participate in…
The three young ones found other homes soon, my tom-cat later died, alas, from the constant assaults of a ferocious and bigger wild tom-cat, but I am so glad Doucine is still with me after all these years…

At first mute and distant like the half-wild cat she was, she has over the years learnt finally to purr, and to meow in all kinds of eloquent conversational tones. She is giving me every day more and more tenderness and affection – actually almost like a small dog would! – coming quietly and instantly to join me wherever I move to in the house, settling next to me and keeping a physical contact with me by her tail on my foot or around my ankle – unless she just sits squarely on my foot!!! Or jumps altogether on my lap…

Now she likes at last to be petted. More than that: by herself she has invented a special strategy to get me either to serve food in her bowl, or to caress her on the top of her head, from the forehead to between the ears, slowly, while she closes her eyes or, lifting her head, plunges her blissful gaze into my own eyes far above her… So moving.
Her strategy for those ‘special needs’ times is to silently come up to my desk chair while I’m sitting there working for example on this blog, and to break my concentration by putting one of her front paws straight on my right leg (the nearest), and waiting like this for a while. If that doesn’t do it and I still ignore her, she will stretch up vertically to as far high as she can reach, along my body, and hopefully manage to touch this time my right arm with her paw!!! Truly amazing. Then of course I can’t resist any longer, I turn towards her with a few affectionate words, and then obligingly do the food serving or the head caressing, whatever happens to be the case, that she is asking for…
Together with my body-cells’ smiling and tender collective presence often closing in warmly around me inside of my body, Doucine is my dearest companion.
What does her name means? It’s not a regular French word, but one from the créole language of Martinique (French West Indies) that I have sometimes heard my grand parents speak briefly, and that I always liked, for these créole languages are generally straight from the people’s lives, with still all the vividness and expressiveness of life itself, not intellectualised. In Martinique, a ‘doucine’ means any sweet (French ‘doux’ /fem. ‘douce’) moment, any sweet, utterly enjoyable moment you can experience or give yourself in life: savoring an ice-cream, lazying in a comfortable hammock, kissing endlessly your lover, strolling alone (or with your lover again…) along a beautiful beach, watching silently a magnificent sunset, or sunrise… listening to quiet music… any time off from hectic time, lived just for the sheer enjoyment of it, is a ‘doucine’. This specific lady-cat seemed to be quite an expert at finding such ‘sweet’ moments and perfect places for herself all the time, so ‘Doucine’ I called her, and I was right: even more than cats normally all do, she has that ‘doucine’ instinct; just living with her, near her, is for me a blessing, for her whole little being teaches me constantly how to simply relax and enjoy life… divinely.

2 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Carol Leigh Rice, M.A. (Silk)
    May 21, 2011 @ 08:07:33

    Such a lovely sharing, thank you for letting us spend time with you and Doucine in such a pleasant relaxed little interlude! She sounds like an old soul that knew you well, or certainly “recognized” a safe harbour and knew this would be a long and loving association. Isn’t it interesting – “love in strange places” which I had just found myself posting…

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    • Bhaga
      May 22, 2011 @ 08:01:49

      Yes, I do think there is something like an old soul there… I almost named her ‘Neferkitty’ (!), because with her beautiful, khôl-circled eyes, she looks so Egyptian, she keeps reminding me of Queen Nefertiti, who was my idol when I was a small girl, with a big poster of her well-known bust up above my desk in the room I had to share with my elder sister… And, I think of it only now, the name my parents had given me was actually Christiane, but usually shortened to ‘Kitty’…
      Can one have as one’s animal a cat, instead of an eagle or a bear or other such impressive animals?!?
      I like horses very much too, though, just as I do cats, and for the same reasons: their incredible beauty, graceful movements and power, even when they are not of very big size or high pedigree.
      One of my other lifetimes is in the Native American culture and I highly appreciate what you say of it in your now enlarged sidebar text – with still that strikingly beautiful ‘White Buffalo Calf Woman’ robed in feathers all around her, whom I salute every time I visit your blog…

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