Traveling with the Gray Menace was always an enjoyable “treat.” It was late May, and I was packed and ready to return to Boston for a summer of sailing and seeing old friends. The Menace was looking forward to mouse hunts in our rented quarters, attendance at Beacon Hill parties, and beating up the tough neighborhood cats. It was a union of good events: we were out of stifling Philly and back home in New England.
The drive up, all six hours of it, was accompanied by the feline equivalent of -“are we there yet?” yowled pitifully. At gas stations along the way, I was regarded with suspicion. What was he doing to that poor kitty? Eventually, I gave in to his demands and allowed him to lie in the area between the back seat and the rear window. He growled and swatted at every mutt he spotted hanging its head out of a car window. At traffic lights, the virtual death threats exchanged added a certain zest the trip had lacked previously.
He was allowed to exercise on a leash at a truck stop until he spied a German Shepherd, his favorite prey. The dog made the mistake of lunging. The Menace coyly sidestepped, moved in, and joyfully clipped the dog’s privates with freshly sharpened claws. The owner screamed at me while his hundred twenty-five pound bruiser struggled to get out of the pussy cat’s reach. We departed in a hurry. The Grey Menace scrupulously cleaned the gore from his claws. I’m not sure of the dogs blood type, but the Menace enjoyed it all.
When we arrived in Boston, we headed directly to the Harvard Gardens, where our friends waited for us. The Menace headbutted the Monk. And lay down on his lap for a nap. “so how was the trip north?” ” pretty normal. Nothing unusual.”