In the story “MS. Rambo And The Fox” I told you about two of MS. Rambo’s escapades. To re-cap a little for you, she was a little thing, probably half Siamese because she had that trim build and I doubt that she weighed as much as eight pounds. She was just a young cat when her people, our neighbors up the hill, moved out and left her. For the next few months we saw her going from house to house, mooching a meal wherever she could. Pat always left some food and water on our patio for her. One dark and rainy evening we heard a terrible howling outside our front door. We opened it to discover that Ms. Rambo had decided to move in with us and to prove her good intentions and display her good manners, she had a live rat in her mouth as a hostess gift. Pat dried her off and I finally caught the rat, which she had dropped, and we began our coexistence. Pat and I petted Rambo and played with her and she became a delightful pet.IT turned out though, that Rambo pretty much hated everyone but Pat and I. When our grown kids were at the house, they kept a wary eye on her and hoped they wouldn’t be attacked.
At the time of Rambo’s next major performance, we were living in a gated community of 110 homes known as Avocado Estates. It was a great place for people and their animals. There were three avocado groves (free pickin’s for homeowners), an Olympic-size pool, club house, tennis courts, a fishing pond, and a hiking trail. We lived there for 11 years and enjoyed every minute of it. We only left because retirement was on the horizon and we wanted to downsize and simplify our lives.
The tract was built on a couple of the steepest residential hills I have ever seen. This meant that most of the homes were split level. Our home was on a corner lot, having a street running across the front or east side and a street running down the south side. That street on the south side was the steepest hill in the development and crested at our corner. Our lot was so steep that if you looked at our house from the front, it appeared as a single story. If you looked at the house from the back, it looked like a three-story structure. The redwood deck, outside the main floor was the same height as a normal second story. The redwood deck ran the full width of the house and had a standard 36″ high railing.
One beautiful day, Pat and I were sitting on the back deck. Ms. Rambo was seated, on her haunches, on the railing at the south side of the deck. We were busy, talking, and not paying much attention to Rambo. She was busy, bathing, and enjoying the sun. All of a sudden, Rambo jumped to her feet and went into her “high alert” stance. Naturally, we were curious to know what was going on and jumped to our feet, too. We all looked out to the south and saw a neighbor walking down the middle of the street as his dog wandered ahead of him. This guy never had his dog on a leash but let it wander through every yard it came to and was probably relieving himself at each one though it was hard to catch him at it.
The dog made it over into our yard and was going from bush to bush and smelling everything. We could see that Rambo was itching to go after this mutt. She was strung up tighter than a guitar string. “This intruder needs to be punished!” The dog kept coming until he was nearly below us. All of a sudden, Rambo jumped! Pat and I leaned forward to see what was happening. The area directly behind the house was fenced off and there was a gate almost directly under the deck. Rambo went flying through the air and landed on the top of a 4″ x 4″ gate post. She bounced off on to the back of that rotten dog. The dog jumped straight into the air and then took off running, yelping at every step. Rambo had her claws in deep and looked like a regular jockey looks when they are hunkered down and the horse is running flat out. The dog’s owner was yelling and flapping his arms and trying to get them to stop but there was no stopping Rambo. She was making a “money ride” today.
A while later Ms. Rambo came prancing home. Maybe it was just our imaginations, but we thought she had a big smile on her face and was acting mighty proud. Well, we were mighty proud, too.
June 16, 2017