Cammie has a weekend morning routine. It doesn’t occur every Saturday, but usually on Sundays. After I get up at six o’clock to give Tucker his insulin, and to feed the beasts, I go back to bed for a while. About eight-thirty, I feel a cat leap up onto the bed near my head; from her weight and the fact that she is trying to avoid any other cat who may be present, I know that it’s Cammie.
As I generally sleep either on my side or my stomach, the princess will proceed to walk this way and that across my back, purring the whole time. She will pause to lie down, partially on me and partially off, only to start roaming again. At last, I turn onto my back and she comes up to my chest, lying down near my neck, her head about half an inch from my chin. There, she will stay - albeit moving from facing toward the left to facing the right, then back again, several times - while I stroke her head and rub her chin. Periodically, she will bump my face with hers.
This is our principal time together. Cammie will usually brave the boys, who will be at the bottom of the bed, and sometimes even Josie, who may be lying not far away. The princess purrs as if she is enjoying her time but also as if she is fulfilling a quota; I feel as though she may be thinking, “Yes, this is adequate; continue; a bit more…”
Eventually, she will leave, abruptly, though not quite without warning. At some point, her purring will fade, diminishing in strength and volume. When it vanishes completely, she will spring away, often with a croaking statement. It may be a thank-you, or it may simply be a checkmark in the box designated ‘operation completed’.
But, in the end, Cammie would not do this unless she enjoyed it, and wanted to spend a while with me. It takes little time, fifteen minutes or so, possibly twenty. I will sometimes wake half an hour later (Sundays I try to sleep somewhat more than on other days), to find that she has jumped back on the bed, this time satisfied to lie next to me. She may never be a lap-cat or even a cuddler; most of the time, she is guarded and aloof. But she shows in her own way that she likes me, and that we are friends.