December 10th, 2019 / posted by paularath

My beloved “Last Cat,” Eleele

Three years ago, Jerry and I had three cats: Scrimshaw (“Scrimmy”), a lovely, loving, mellow gray cat Duncan and I found at the Humane Society, who lived happily with us until he died at the age of 21; LT, a feral cat who was born in our back yard and lived on our deck and in our yard for 16 years,; and Eleele, a gorgeous but temperamental cat we adopted from Maleakahana Park who lived with us for six years before she died. (We’ll never know how old she was.)

Since we travel so much, we decided that when our “Last Cat” died, we would not have any more pets. Well…..

I have stuck with that. It’s been difficult, as I’ve always been a cat person, but I was true to my word. The litter boxes, food, cat toys – everything left the house after Eleele died. And none of it has been replaced.

Enter the geckos.

Cointreau up close.


Cointreau plays “Suck ‘Em Up” on a martini plate that’s just the right size for an alcoholic gecko.

Geckos as pets? Oh yeah. I’m THAT hard up for a tiny breathing creature to talk to around the house.

It started by accident. One evening Jerry found a gecko clinging to the side of his Cointreau bottle. It was clearly drunk on the Cointreau he licked off the bottle cap. So Cointreau the Gecko became a drinking buddy for Jerry. Soon he had his own little plate where Jerry would pour a tiny bit of Cointreau or Fireball or Vodka – whatever the big guy was drinking, the little guy got some too.

Cointreau leaves “The Pub” after getting quite inebriated.

Then a little green gecko discovered the kitchen. I met him when he was thoroughly enjoying the crumbs left on the counter under the cookie rack. Thus, he became my kitchen gecko, named Cookie.

Cookie had a baby (I think) and he became ‘Cado, as he loved the green fruit we grow in our backyard. Then there was ‘Nana for the bananas we also grow.

Cointreau takes a deep dive into alcohol.

Now the geckos (the latest is Cookie III) are my cooking companions. I talk to them while slicing carrots or prepping mahimahi.

Gecko in a coma

Recently, we had a weird – mystifying – gecko experience. The gecko in the photo above seemed to be in a coma. He hung like that, on the living room wall, for a week. He didn’t blink or move or respond to being lightly touched. Then one day he reappeared on the other side of the big picture windows. He hung there, in the same manner, for another few days.

Then we found him on the floor, unresponsive. His little life, to which clung so long, was finally over.

How on earth did he get from the wall to the floor?

I know, many people hate geckos. But they have actually become my only pets, and I seem to need a little living, breathing “pet”in my life.

Perhaps it’s time for us to bite the bullet and get down to the Humane Society for a couple of kittens?

Paula Rath


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