On Sunday afternoon after Rob and I finished eating some delicious vegan hot wings, we sat on the screen porch and talked about our cat Leroy. It was extremely pleasant. Leroy was asleep nearby on a little couch under the ceiling fan. Even though Leroy and his brother, Elroy, are five years old now, we always think of them as little boys—probably because they're our babies, our youngest cats.
"I always picture Leroy wearing a shirt that's too short so his belly sticks out," Rob said.
Leroy's got a very big belly, and it's pink.
"He looks like he swallowed a watermelon," Rob went on, fondly. "But it's not because he eats too much. Not at all. It's just his shape. It's just the way he is."
Leroy is one of Rob's favorite cats. Leroy is huge and white and has a gentle, retiring personality. He's very lazy.
"Maybe we should start him on an exercise program," I suggested. "I wonder if we could train him to walk on a harness."
"Not outside," Rob said. "He'd be too scared. But maybe we could take him on walks inside. We'd have to start small, of course. Maybe he could walk from one end of the house to the other three times a week."
I nodded, trying not to laugh. "That sounds like a reasonable plan for a beginner."
It was fun talking about Leroy because we aren't really worried about him. He's fine. He looked so comfortable as he slept on his little couch. He was stretching his toes in the ceiling-fan breezes. Outside, the tea olives were pressing against the screens, and wrens and cardinals were fluttering by. There was so much blooming—lemons, tangerines, roses, Ashe magnolias, oxeye sunflowers, coreopsis, Indian pinks. . . . It was nice to just sit there for a few minutes and appreciate it all. We made it through the winter. It's really, truly spring.