Lenny

In this post I want to tell you guys about Lenny. Most people who know me personally, know Lenny too. Thats why I am going to dedicate a post to the little dude.

A year ago I had just moved in with my girlfriend. My almost neurotic urge to be in control of everything was really a problem and we had a lot of arguments. I will admit that most were caused by me. It wasn’t the best of times for our relationship and in general not the most cheery time. A lot of the issues came from me not being very happy with where I was in my life. Instead of grabbing the bull by its horns, I vented my frustration around others. I was an angry, stressed out dude at the time.

I think that has changed a lot, I’ve grown a lot over time, but that’s all much later. I was quite a dick towards people, who stuck with me anyways. I think that as long as your qualities outweigh your crap that will go on. I can’t change that, but I can learn from it, right?  I think I did when I started asking for help from others and got a lot of that from the people around me.  I can find a lot of  starting points for that story of how I got to where I am, which is a much happier place. If you can chose between the truth and the legend though, chose the legend. To quote from the film Big Fish:

– “Y’see, most men, they’ll tell a story straight through— it won’t be complicated, but it won’t be interesting either.”

This story starts in june 2013 when I met my new buddy and roomie: Lenny. Life started to become more full and mostly much more hilarious when he joined us. He just ran over the bed while I was typing this, and now he is sitting in the corner looking at me, sceptically… Weirdo.

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Lenny at arrival, Lenny a year later

Lenny was living with my colleague. She and her roommate had gotten the furry bundle from a lady that get’s abandoned cats from Russia and Belarus over to the Netherlands. Since these animals are easily dumped on the street over there and have a slim chance of finding a home, it’s a great oppertunity to get an awesome new cat-friend for your home. Lenny was born in Brest (Belarus) and spend some happy time with an owner. I imagine he was well taken care of, since he’s always been well mannered, leaving curtains and blankets alone. He did try to eat every plant we have, but after he got sick from one that stopped too.

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From there on Lenny ended up in a pet shelter. Bad food and conditions showed on the little fellow when he moved to the Netherlands before he was one year old. Having arrived here, he spend some time with Maja, the lady who gets them over to here. He left for a new family, but was quickly returned. The other cats were not  best friends with Lenny, hes super playful and doesn’t get it when others aren’t. His friend Orval the cat has often ended up exhausted from playing. Soon a new owner came around, which is how Lenny ended up at my colleague

An allergy was the reason she needed to find him a new home in turn, the cat didn’t spend long enough there to get a name. Me and my girlfriend discussed the animal and decided to go have a look. What harm is there to it?. Upon entering the appartment, the cat soon to be named Lenny marched out to greet us, specially my girlfriend. “We’ll take him.”, she said, immediately. This friendly fellow was going to be a new addition to our family. So Lenny, who was once called Taiger, moved across the street into our place and has been living there ever since, having all sorts of adventures.

Seriously, I can tell you about a hundred Lenny adventures, silly stuff he does that cracks me up all the time… You might not find it that funny to hear how he chases a record around, attacks my shoelaces or tries to get into my wardrobe. How he always runs into open appartments to say hi to people or how he time and time escapes me, forcing me to run after him five floors up… It is amazing how much fun I have with that cat.

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Lenny enjoying some Bongripper

Lenny gave us a reason to work on our relationship, we had a responsibility now. A furry, little guy who needed food, attention ,care and love. It’s funny how it worked out. How Lenny would position himself between us if we had a fight about nothing. How he comforts us and always takes the edge of stressful situations. In the morning he comes up the stairs to the greet us on our entresol, twice since we don’t get up at the same time. He sleeps here too, but obviously a lot shorter. His favorite toys are shoelaces and hair bands, he totally loves those and his energy in catching them is awesome.

He’s been here for a year now. We often go for walks, when he doesnt escape on his own. The open office space down the hall already knows him, like most cats in the hallway. Lenny has even won over my dad and many of my friends. There are still little lessons he teaches us. I don’t think he cares what I try to teach him. It’s great to have a cat to come home to, to hang out with and to laugh about. Soon he’ll have a buddy even and I hope he is as happy here as we are with him. We’re not crazy cat people, just crazy about our little dude who made our lives so much nicer.

Covey says that love is not just a thing that is there, it’s a verb. The feeling only comes once you ‘do’ that verb. What we needed was something to represent that, to become almost that relationship in the flesh. I guess in a way that’s what happened. Like a pet, a relationship develops, grows on you and gives you a great feeling once you nurture it and care for it. If you don’t, it becomes a burden, a strain and cause for stress. Working to take care of Lenny tought me to work for my relationship, a lot of relationships with friends and family too I think, all of that because of a silly little cat.

Lenny fell asleep, sorry if it was boring.

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