Friday, 3 October 2008

My Grandmother's House - Part Four

Well, I am not getting much in the way of comments but I am going to plod on anyway because these entries are special to me and I hope that if we can always be here on Blogger, they will be saved for my Grandsons.

Before moving on to the last room I must pause here to tell you about my Nan's strange affinity with cats. You see she never bought a cat and was never given a cat - but cats she always had.

Shortly after her marriage a stray cat came to her door. She took it in and it remained with her for the rest of its life. Within forty eight hours of its death another cat appeared out of nowhere and the same thing happened. Thus it went on - within a couple of days of the demise of the last cat, another one would appear, sometimes at the back door and sometimes at the front. On occasion they would just walk in. Some cats were old when they appeared, others were sick but whatever time they had left they lived it out with her.

With her gift of the second-sight and people coming to her for advice on all matters it is a sobering thought to realize that centuries ago she would have been classed as a Witch and possibly hanged.

For some reason that none of us ever fathomed, each cat had exactly the same name - "Tutney". Where she got this name from we will never know but every cat that came received the same name from her, male or female it made no difference, although the cats were usually male.

Nan always had a cat on her knee as she held court at the kitchen table, her cats followed her everywhere.

The last Tutney never left her. In her last few years, bedridden and with hardly any sight left, Tutney slept nearly all the time on her chest or stomach and she would stroke him for hour upon hour. He would only leave her to eat or to answer the call of nature.

Came the fateful day. Aunt Bet who had so lovingly cared for Nan all through her declining years had to go into hospital herself, it could not be put off or she would lose her leg. My Mother could not take Nan because there was no spare bedroom. In the end it had to be decided that Nan would go into one hospital whilst Bet received her treatment in another.
Everyone did their best to explain to her but Nan begged and pleaded not to go, she wanted to live out the rest of her time in her own home and eventually pass away in the same room as her beloved Will. Nothing could be done. The ambulance came to take Nan away. Tutney went outside and sat watching her being carefully loaded into the ambulance, then he went back into the house, wandered around Nan's room as if taking one last look and then he left the house never to return or even to be seen again. Tutney had sensed what none of us could possibly know - Nan would not be coming back.

Nan died within days, I think of a broken heart. She just gave up once she was forced to leave her beloved home.

No cat ever lived in or entered my Grandmother's house again.


  1. It's strange when animals sense the sadness... I think it's great you are sharing these memories with us!!!

  2. I have tried to leave comments Jeannette, but so far it has been my own fault for not following the procedure properly!

    Loved the story about the cats - I do not believe in extra sensory perception as far as humans are concerned, but I suspect that animals do sense 'things'.

    Now lets see if this comment gets through!

    all the best

  3. have been reading your memories. ty for sharing them with us. {{}}
    i have very few myself, only little snippets here & there.
    have a nice wkend.

  4. Your stories are absolutely endearing. Your writing reminds me of Mary Stewart. My all time favorite book is Thornyhold by Ms. Stewart, and this latest entry brought me right back to that book.
    Thank you, you made my day. Consider me one of your faithful followers!
    Please write a book!!

  5. Hi...oh, I have to go back and reread your stories, I love when you write like this. My own life is in chaos this week so I haven't had time to read or write too much here...but I will. Love, Sandi

  6. I am in tears with this entry - Bless her heart and her little Tutney(s).

  7. Hi Jeannette, I found your link and will keep you bookmarked.


  8. I'm enjoying the trip down memory lane. As for comments a bunch of us are still dealing with our reader issues (Old AOL alerts coming in, along with followers). Add in the confusion of everyone trying to move their files over and sending out false alerts...give it time dear friend things will calm down eventually and resemble normalcy. (Hugs)Indigo

  9. Loved these entries Jeannette, memories are so special, thanks for sharing with us.


  10. This has been a wonderful story how are you managing to save them are you doing them over. Love Joan.

  11. This story is amazing Jeannette and you told it so well. The hairs on the back of my neck went up when I read of Tutney leaving the house and never returning. He must have posessed the same second sight as your grandmother.

    Love Sandra xxxx

  12. Iremember these lovely stortys and am enjoying them all over again ,thats why you are such a good journalist Jeannette ,your stuff can be read over and over ,yes animals do sense things ,Kizzie seemed to know when Maurice was so poorly Jan xx

  13. What a sweet story.. I will never forget the last time our family cat looked up at me. I could sense by it's expression he was trying to say goodbye. Animals and children have a sixth sense-they know and recognize good souls like your grandmother. Thanks for sharing--I love your stories. You are quite the story teller! Julie

  14. OMGosh.....that was a tear jerker. Poor Nan, how sad for her that she couldn't stay at is a sad tale that happens to many, including my MIL. The story of Tutney never returning sent shivers up my spine...yet seemed so fitting of his love & devotion to her. I'm so sorry that you no longer have her in your life...but how wonderful that your memories are so vivid and alive. She will live on forever though, through your Grandchildren and theirs that follow in the future....your beautifully written words have assured that. I thank you for sharing them with me.

    Pooh Hugs,


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