So, Mike had a chance to talk to Dr. K. 2 days ago, and the news was good. Mike is classified as having a Very Good Partial Response to the stem cell transplant based upon a normal appearance of his bone marrow biopsy and dramatic reduction in the abnormal proteins in his blood. Dr. K. was happy, so we are happy. Mike will be resuming chemotherapy, and his medication has been ordered. Some of it is new, and most of it is what he was on before. We are choosing to view this as chronic disease management, and do not think of Mike as having a disease that is going to take his life. Mike has cancer; cancer does not have Mike. It is estimated that by 2030 in the USA there will be 22.1 million cancer survivors. Mike plans to be one of them.
The weather remains beautiful. I wandered by Big Fluff’s house yesterday. He was lounging in front of the garage, looking bored. A few feet away was his brother, a black cat named Underfoot, looking equally bored, if not moreso. When I passed by their house a few minutes later they had gone inside. There is a tabby cat that lives there also, but I rarely see her. Lots of people and their pets are out and about now, and many more people are home during the day, with schools closed and many people working from home. We had a huge pollen dump 2 days ago, so everything is covered in pine pollen, although nothing shows it quite so clearly as a black cat that his been rolling around in the grass.
Mike got a mailing from a group called Alley Cat Rescue, which was urging donations in order to save an African wildcat, Felis silvestris lybica. This cat looks like a domestic cat and may well be our progenitor. The main threat to this wildcat is hybridization with domesticated and feral cats. The solution is a major effort at TNR (Trap, Neuter, Release). This will decrease the number of fertile domesticated and feral cats in the habitat, and promote mating with their own species. Wildcats are threatened in many parts of the world. Mike and Judy recently saw a TV program on the Scottish wildcat, of which there might only be 3 dozen or so remaining. Maybe this is why in an hour program there was only about 2 minutes worth of footage, albeit shown over and over again. I also wrote some time ago about the Pallas Cat of Central Asia ( “A New Low in Demagoguery,” July 19, 2019.)
So, a word about the nastiness of people who are trying to racialize the COVID-19 outbreak. Spoiled Donald has referred to the “foreign virus”, and we have seen references to the “Wuhan coronavirus” and the “Chinese flu.” We have even seen this behavior on websites which are presenting educational material about the Holy Scriptures. Mike has called this out, but some people just don’t get it, or don’t care. This is a time when we need to be pulling the Family of Man together, not creating deeper divisions. Cats would never act like that. There is a verse from an old Negro spiritual that goes:
“We’re in the same boat, brother; we’re in the same boat, brother.
And if you shake one end you gonna rock the other,
We’re in the same boat, brother.”
So, that’s all for now from Happy Meadows. Mike continues to get calls from friends every day, which we appreciate. He just got off the phone with Ginny from Florida. Oh, and tomorrow will mark Mike going 37 years without a drink of alcohol. He didn’t do it alone. Don’t forget to pray for world peace, and for everyone in need (that’s everyone.) Bye, bye!