It’s been two weeks now, maybe three. Her story has long gone from thought, though not mine. The stroke of luck that turned her life around from orphans by a sweatshop near Bandung airbase, her gloomy past, her struggling present, and the bleak outlook that comes after .

I knew when I got her, that she might not stay long. She was in a terrible shape then. Parasites, bad immune, bad digestion, undernourishment, and tail stuck on some sort of gear that strip it raw to the meat and bone, starting to be eaten by infection.

Too young to live, too young to die.

And I have Tito, then. I have Spots, I have Artemis. I have Charlie the Persian whose problems are more than skin deep, literally.

And then I have her, and her two siblings, and everything else that made our lives failing.

We were that close to death. The bills have not been paid, the credit have not been paid, the mortgage have not been paid, the vet have not been paid, only what food we have until the end of the week are paid, but beyond, there were none.

Her tail needs amputation, before infection spread and kill the rest of her, slow and painful, but it’s lost battle either way. She didn’t have what it takes to withstand the operation, I didn’t have what it takes to make it happen.

It’s a sair ficht for half a loaf.

The Scots had it right. Life is unfair. It’s a sore fight for only half a loaf.

So half a loaf I fight for, and there I went looking for sea cucumber.

Sea cucumber is delicacy in Chinese cuisine. It’s hard to catch, and it’s poisonous enough to kill its poachers so it’s very expensive, and I mean expensive. It’s USD 120 per kilogram (2 lbs).

It’s slimy, and it’s tricky. One minute undercook and it’s hard as rock, one minute overcook and it turned into fishy smelling jell-o that got stuck on you three days in a row.

Guid gear comes in sma’ bulk. Good things comes in small packages.

Sea cucumber has this thing (in Chinese that I cannot find a translation for) and that thing (some enzyme in Chinese that I also cannot find translation for), but long story short it has best healing capabilities down to the cell level for specifically whatever problem she so happen to hog all by herself.

One half of it went through her mouth, one half of it crushed and all over her tail. Put bandage on it so she won’t mop fish all over my house, and bitter spray so she won’t take the bandage off.

If she didn’t heal after one kilogram of sea cucumber that made people eyeball on me (poor looking girl bought one million and two hundred thousand Indonesian Rupiah worth of sea cucumber), I give up. I know natural medicine might take time to work, and one kilogram most likely not enough, but I am stretching myself so thin, I was transparent, and even an ounce more will blow hole on me. So one kilogram is my last chance next to begging my vet to keep her service and refinance my debt.

At first, she just sat there, by the sidelines, while others fought for their food. She can only take baby food and spirulina then, and when she went to the box, the bad spirits will go back to hell at their own will.

Then she starts drinking by herself, so I mix in vitamins and amino acids into that bowl.

Then she started sniffing on the bowl.

Then she took a bite.

Then she took some more.

And more.

And more.

And her tail turn to dry.

And dry.

And dry.

She went to the vet the second time, and the vet said “I don’t know what you did, but her tail is OK”

No surgery, no stitching, nothing.

I should be happy, but I wasn’t. That day we came back home to a failing fundraiser and only USD 45 in our account.

That day I won one battle, but lost the whole war. Ten years war against neglect, abuse, ignorance.

And she fell asleep on my dirty bag and jacket like tomorrow will never die.

Guid gear comes in sma’ bulk. Good things comes in small packages.

One ten Dollar from a friend. Then from others. And another, and another, and another.

It’s a lang road that’s no got a turnin. There is no long road without a turn.

And another ten Dollars, and another, and another.

And the despair turn into hope.

And the hope turn into joy

And the joy turns to life.

And the life, turns to her eyes.

Guid gear comes in sma’ bulk. Good things comes in small packages.

Lang may yer lum reek.

Long may our chimney smoke, my friend; with all the good things that you bring in small packages, long may our chimney smoke.

Long may she live and prosper.

And then we may save more.

~ Josie

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Josie And The Whiskers' Syndicate

The first and only cat refuge in Bandung (West Java - Indonesia) a capital breeder of a nation without animal welfare law. We care for Bandung's unwanted animals, operate a TNR as much as our budget allows, and continue to educate people about compassion to animals

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