Saturday, February 6, 2010


My husband had a couple very close friends. One of them he spent many hours out on Lake Eire or in the Canadaway Creek fishing with. They both loved to fish - and enjoyed the pastime together. Often they would take the boys and enjoy the day, while us girls would enjoy some time together as well.

After my husband passed, I called on his fishing friend often for help when I needed it. He was (is) always so gracious in being willing to help me when I need it. One of those days that I really needed his help was about two months after I had moved into the home I am in now. I will warn you now... the weak in stomach... this story may not be for you!

After I moved in to this home - my niece moved in with me. It was her senior year of high school and her mother was moving out of state - but she wanted to finish her high school career in the east. About a month later I noticed a foul smell. I could not tell where it was coming from - but I thought maybe one of the cats (we had one and my niece had one) had caught a mouse that was decaying in the house. We searched all over - but could find nothing.

Every day I would come home from work and feel as though the smell was getting worse and worse. I finally could not take the smell any longer. I called my husband's fishing friend and asked him what he thought I should do. I told him that I had searched the house and could not find anything. I explained the the scent was the worst just as I was entering the house but that I could also smell it stronger (not as strong as I could by the front door) while in my niece's bedroom. I thought an animal must have gotten in the attic, as her room had a small access door off the closet. I had even gone into the attic and looked around - but found nothing.

He kindly agreed to come over and take a look. He went up into the attic with a flash light. Searching every corner and crevice, it took him a little while - but he finally found it. There was something way down in the rafters of the house. He could not get there (without the fear of falling) so he had to come up with some creative way of getting, whatever it was, out. As he set up some lights and tried to get closer, he quickly realized it was a cat. After asking my niece about it - she started to cry. She revealed that her cat had been missing for a few days. She thought he had just gone outside and she hoped he would come back.

The foul smell was even more foul where my husband's poor fishing friend was having to work and he was not having much luck as the cat seemed to be stuck. After an hour of trying to get the cat, he finally had the idea to remove the front porch light and try to go in from there to retrieve the feline. He asked us to have a bag ready. Once the light was removed the smell became almost unbearable.

In the meantime I called my husband's other good friend who lived in the country. I explained our predicament and explained that the odor was so horrible I didn't know where we would put the feline once we were able to get him out. I inquired if it were possible for us to bury the cat back in his woods. He agreed.

The fishing friend had much more luck once he changed the location he was working from. It was not too much longer and the feline was retrieved and placed in his burial bag. Luckily my friend also drove a truck and agreed to drive me out (with the cat in the bed of the truck) to bury the cat. The odor was so atrocious the entire neighborhood was consumed with the smell. I was so hoping no one would be able to detect which home was letting off the unbearable odor.

Attempting to control my reflex to heave repeatedly, we drove out to my other friend's home. With a cat and a shovel.

Upon our arrival, we found the burial spot had already been prepared. As we finished the burial process, I half worried that the smell would draw animals in and risk the feline being "unburied". But then I determined the odor was so atrocious - no animal would want to come close.

Now, I ask you this. Who has friends as good as these two men? To give up their evening to climb around in my stinking attic and to dig a hole and be ready for me? That is friendship.

As we drove home that evening, I looked at my husband's best friend and said... "I hope the fishing was good. 'Cause having to deal with the widow... not so good".

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