|Birth: ||Mar. 29, 2000|
|Death: ||Oct. 12, 2011|
Also Known As: Lukester, Luka-Duke, Luki, Lukamanski, Luke-Luke, The Big Guy, Mr. Luka, The Boneless Cat.
Brother of Lena Podboy
On Thursday, June 22, 2000 I went to Assisi Animal Foundation in Crystal Lake, Illinois to take a look at a kitten named Lena who had just come in to the shelter. No one told me she had a brother until I got there and a little longhair tabby fuzz ball climbed right into my lap and started purring up a storm. His name at the shelter was Lester and, even though I wasn't planning on adopting both him and his shorthair sister Lena, I couldn't leave either one behind. On the ride home I renamed him Luka in honor of my Slovenian 3rd great-grandfather.
He was not quite three months old when he came into my life and quickly demonstrated a personality that was very laid back and easygoing. The complete opposite of his sister, Luka enjoyed meeting people and investigating new things. Nothing upset him and he was open to all experiences. In his early years, he routinely patrolled the house, almost like a dog, seeming to want to make sure everything was secure on his watch. His canine-like persona impressed and endeared him to confirmed dog lovers who saw first hand how seriously he took his job.
Luka didn't have a mean bone in his body. He liked getting his chin scratched and then he'd turn around and present his backside for a scratch right at the base of his tail. If you held out your hand about two feet off the floor, rubbed your fingers together and asked him to stand up, he'd walk over, sit up on his hind feet and bump your extended hand with his head.
He liked to chew on things and had a special affinity for the cords on corded phones. He'd swat a pen you were trying to write with out of your hand just with a lightning fast smack just so he could chew on it. In his younger days, he'd run off with the pen and hide it in his own secret stash. If he was hungry and you weren't moving fast enough to refill the bowl, he'd chew on your fingers -- never once breaking the skin or leaving a mark -- just to tell you to hurry up. He had big teeth too, like a staple remover. He loved to be front and center when a new can of cat food was opened. His passion was licking the juice and gravy off before the other cats got their heads in the bowl.
Besides eating, Luka's other favorite activity was sleeping. I'd never had a cat who so enjoyed his rest and relaxation. So exhausted! Because of his long hair, he reminded me of a wooly mammoth particularly in the summer when it would get so hot. Since he couldn't just unzip his fur coat to cool off, Luka's solution was to lie on his back under the ceiling fan, legs extended, with the fur on his belly blowing in the breeze. I called this his "airing out his underside" moment except he wouldn't move for an hour or more.
Luka's eyes were a beautiful shade of green that were accentuated with perfectly applied black eyeliner. He had big fuzzy feet that were made even bigger by the long hairs that grew between his toes. This made nail trims challenging and didn't give him much traction on hard floors. His ears were also tufted on the ends, making him look like a bobcat. My conversations with Luka consisted of me asking him if he was handsome and then answering for him in the affirmative that, yes, he was very good looking. He never disagreed. He was always very photogenic. Luka's speaking voice most closely resembled Wookieese -- "aargh!" -- popularized by Chewbacca in Star Wars (another larger-than-life character who was compared to a "walking carpet").
The one time I remember getting mad at Luka was when he became fascinated with the ink cartridge moving back and forth inside an inkjet printer as I was printing something out. He was still pretty young then. Turning away for a moment, I looked back to see him with an entire arm reaching up inside the printer to touch the moving "thing" inside. Not satisfied with just touching the cartridge to stop it from moving, Luka withdrew his arm and brought with a pawful of electronic "guts." The sales guy I told the story to at the store when I went to buy a replacement printer really wanted to meet this mighty cat who disemboweled a printer with a single paw.
It is said that those we love pass when the limitations of their body are no longer serving the expansiveness of their spirit. And it is not according to our timeline or expectations. I regret that I only got to spend 11 years with Luka, but I'm thankful I spent that time in the presence of such a wise old soul. He was a unique individual with a heart of gold. His last nine days on Earth came and went very quickly, his downward spiral beyond control, but I spent what time I did have with him expressing my gratitude and love for having known him. He took his last breath at 4:35 p.m. on Wednesday, October 12, 2011 while lying in the crook of my arm on my lap. It was a comfortable and familiar place for him to transition back to spirit. He came into my life 11 years, 3 months and 21 days before and he left the same way except a big piece of my heart went with him. Luka always was bigger than life.
Besides me, Luka is survived by his grandpops; sister Lena; stepsister Tatiana; and stepbrothers Sage and Shaman. He was predeceased by his stepsister Neko who was there to meet him at the Bridge.
Save a life and adopt a shelter animal.
Cremated, Ashes given to family or friend.
Created by: Patti Podboy
Record added: Oct 12, 2011
Find A Grave Memorial# 78293587