You were this beautiful, long-hair calico tabby mix. So many people had so many names for you: Winniecat, Winnifer, Queen Winnie, Miss Winnie... You loved being told that you were "such a pretty kitty!" I also called you fuzzy buns because, well, you had fuzzy buns. You had a spot on your right front paw right where your pinky would be. I would poke it and tell you you had cute toes and you'd just give me a "look."
Your tail was such an extension of you and your opinion at the time - which you had no reservation in voicing - ever. You were such a talker through your little meows and your trills. You would acknowledge any action that you had taken with a long, slow, understanding blink that said, "Yes, I did that. And..?"
You would love to cuddle under the covers when you were cold. We kept each other warm that way. If you slept on top of the covers, you would sleep in the niche between my legs as I sleep with one leg straight and the other bent. You would curl up right in that triangle. I couldn't move once you'd settled in, but I didn't care.
You loved to lie in the sun. You would stretch out on your back, in complete security, exposing your belly for the world to see. If I tried to wake you up, the only response I got was a slight twitch-twitch of the very tip of your tail. "I hear you, but call back later. I'm sleeping." You loved for me rub your belly, softly. You would let me poke you between the pads on your feet, as long as it was gentle, and you would just stretch your paws even more. You would also let me, ever so softly, pet your face while you slept. And you always joined me when I was out in the sun. You loved being outdoors.
When you stayed with Grandma, you would not allow yourself to be treated like the other cats. They would go through the garage door, you would wait patiently by the front door for someone to open it for you and let you out. You wouldn't ring the little bell on the screen door to let someone know you wanted in, you would sit there until we noticed you so patiently waiting. And if we didn't, you'd go and jump on the screen in the window and hang there like Garfield until we opened the door for you.
You always liked to be higher up than everybody else. We weren't sure if this was a, "King of the Hill" complex or what. One of your favorite places was on top of the banister. You would barrel down the stairs, jump up, and slide just in time to a halt at the edge. One time you overshot it and left scratch marks there as you slid the rest of the way down. We didn't laugh even though it was funny. We didn't want you mad at us!
We loved the way you would inspect the cabinets. We figured you were looking for mice. Then you would expect a treat for doing your duty and making sure everything was safe.
Every morning I would pick you up, and you would try to stop me by digging your claws into the comforter. But I would bring you in real close to me, to my chest, and give you a big bear hug and an all-over rub-down. And you'd purr and let me, if even for only a few seconds. Then you would sit on my dresser each morning as I got dressed and ready for work and you would talk to me.
Whenever you wanted your way, you would sit there so prim and proper and all puffed up looking cute. And I would always give in to what you wanted - if I had figured that part out!
You were beautiful, vibrant, and loving. And I miss you more than I even know how to express it.
You will never be forgotten, my sweet Winnie. I hope we meet again some day.