The Legend Of Fluffy The Manx Cat

Merry Christmas Eve to all of my friends all around the world. I wish you God’s abundant love and everlasting peace on this day and on every day.

Today I’m bringing back a Christmas classic that’s been featured on my blog before in various forms. It’s the story of the greatest Christmas gift ever – the arrival of a cat.

It started out as a morning like any other, but just a few hours later it would become a morning that forever changed the lives of me and my little brother, and our Mom and Dad.

Exactly 37 years ago yesterday morning on Friday December 23RD 1983 me (age 16½) and my little brother (age 8½) looked out our living room window at the snow and the ice on the ground of our backyard. It was a bitter cold morning in McLean Virginia 2 days before Christmas, and we were happy to be warm and comfortable inside.

But there was a creature stirring outside that was not warm and comfortable. It was a lonely young cat with no tail that was wandering around aimlessly on our ice-covered backyard patio deck, and it was shivering in misery. Me and my brother decided rather quickly that it did not belong in the harsh elements of the outside at that moment, so we opened the door and she walked right in to our more sheltered screened-in ‘Florida Room’.

We gave her some milk to drink. She loved us for it. We gave her some love. We heard a strange sound coming from her that we hadn’t heard before. It was the friendly and inviting sound of her purring. We let her in to our warm and comfortable home. She never looked back. In fact she refused to leave after that. We pretty much named her ‘Fluffy’ that day, and she instantly became an important part of our family – the missing link if you will.

That’s a young me in 1985 holding a young Fluffy. I was about 60 pounds lighter than I am today.

She was the 5TH member of our family, and she was the start of nearly 30 years of felines in our family. Fluffy loved us all, but she clearly adored me the most. During her younger years she anxiously awaited me to open the basement / laundry room door for her first thing in the morning so that she could run (and beat me) to my bedroom upstairs for a long round of petting and purring. During her later years in Jacksonville Florida when she was slowly dying she literally came back to life over and over again and jumped and loved on me and ran upstairs to my parents’ guest room whenever I arrived for a short visit. She lived a long, happy, and healthy life (until April of 2001), and she provided lots of love to our family starting with that very first Christmas of 1983.

There have been other cats and dogs within our family over the years since then. Fluffy eventually gained a feline roommate with Barney (also known as “the cat that never liked me”). After Fluffy’s death Barney eventually gained his own feline roommate with Pumpkin. Boots was my own loving cat and housemate for 12½ years here in Homestead Florida until his (expected) death on May 17TH 2007. He was the coolest cat that ever lived.

But it all started with “Fluffy The Manx Cat”. She was the Matriarch of all of our family pets (to this day). She was the Queen of her castle. She was the stability of our family. She was our family’s common denominator. She was the center of attention. She was the most lovable cat that ever lived.

Fun Fact: This WordPress blog is a spinoff of my former hit music based massivesmash.com web site that I created in 1995. That web site grew out of a previous web site known as “MANx On The Net”. That first web site was a spinoff of “MANx Cat BBS” (1993-1997) – a dial-up bulletin board typical of its time that was inspired by and named after Fluffy.

All rights reserved (c) 2020 Christopher M. Day, CountUp Ministries

Fort Morgan

This past Sunday I wrote all about my fun adventures just outside the big city of Mobile Alabama. I praised, worshipped, and celebrated Christ at my friends’ church. I enjoyed a delicious Thai Lunch. I walked a family farm with goats. Sunday was my fun day away from my family on this family vacation.

The next day – Monday – was supposed to be a fun family visit to the local zoo in Gulf Shores. I had planned on this day for many weeks. I was really looking forward to it. I soon realized that (aside from myself) nobody else was really interested in going to the zoo – not even my two nieces (ages 10 and 7). I was a little bit heartbroken about that.

I decided to simply go to the zoo by myself. As I was looking for a coupon to the zoo in a tourist magazine I stumbled across a full-page color ad for a place I had never heard of before – Fort Morgan. It’s an old war fort at the far-western tip of the barrier island that Orange Beach and Gulf Shores are located on about 30 miles away. It sits at the mouth of Mobile Bay where it meets the Gulf Of Mexico. It’s an Alabama State Historic Site and a U.S. National Historic Landmark. It’s on the U.S. National Register Of Historic Places. The brave soldiers that served at this site protected our nation during the War Of 1812, the Civil War, the Spanish-American War, World War 1, and World War 2.

In lieu of the zoo I went to the fort by myself early last Tuesday morning. When I arrived at the entrance gate I was immediately greeted and recognized as a Veteran. I was admitted for free. That was a nice surprise. I spent a couple of hours touring the site. It was bigger and better than I expected. I took 44 photos of the 200+ years of history all around me. I’ve already posted over a dozen of these photos on my Flickr site, and you can also see the last 5 photos posted here on my blog site. Here’s one I haven’t posted yet:

This visit – planned just hours in advance – turned out to be one of the highlights of my recent 9-day / 2-state / 1,690-mile road-trip vacation. I’m glad I discovered it in a tourist magazine. I’ll be talking about this place for years to come.

All rights reserved (c) 2020 Christopher M. Day, CountUp Ministries