fuguer (feuh-gay) verb
to run away, to run off
Listen to Jean-Marc pronounce and conjugate the French verb fuguer:
je fugue, tu fugues, il/elle fugue, nous fuguons, vous fuguez, ils/elles fuguent
When our kitten disappeared for the second time, I did not pound my fists or cry out. Chances are, he'll be back, I reasoned. He has probably discovered a McMice drive-thru at the other end of this old farmhouse and he is filming his own documentary--"Souris* Size Me"--in between chow downs.
But when I awoke the next day to a free and clear pathway to the coffee machine, no furry, zigzagging traffic to trip me up--and so redirect my path away from the coffee and towards the cat vittles--I realized our minou* was missing.
The hardest was watching my family fall apart. Max and Jackie went on a hunger strike. Jean-Marc, tears in his eyes, trawled the sea of grapevines in front of our house, shaking a half-empty bag of cat croquettes and calling out "Coco! Coco!"
Even our dog, Braise, looked depressed -- her eyes drooping lower than usual.
"Vas-y, Braise!" Go on Braise. Go find Coco! I commanded. Our golden retriever joined Jean-Marc--this time as copilot--as the two drove through the vineyard in a beat-up Citroën. Nearby, the neighboring farmhouses had more than bills in their mailboxes: there was Jean-Marc's hot-off-the-press flyer* announcing our "minou perdu".*
By noon, Jean-Marc and I sat slumped over the lunch table, mindlessly spooning leftovers into our silent mouths. We did not talk about the cold creek that Coco might have fallen into. We did not mention the hungry foxes or the disorienting fields or the birds of prey flying menacingly above.
At three o'clock, the heaviness inside me suddenly lifted when I heard a familiar sound: the cautious footsteps of "man holding child," only, it had been almost ten years since we carried our children that way....
Jean-Marc entered the room and, as I had imagined, his arms were cradled.
"Where did you find him?" I asked.
My husband smiled down into his arms and cooed: "I didn't. Braise did."
I looked lovingly at our kitten, who appeared "supersized" to me after spending the night in our mouse-ridden storeroom next door. And all the while we thought he was McMissing.
References: la souris (f) = mouse; le minou (m) = kitty; flyer (see the flyer that Jean-Marc made); le minou (m) perdu = lost kitten;
Read: The Cat Who Walked Across France & The Cat Who Went to Paris
The following text is from the book: The Complete French for Cats
When I meow, it means . . .
Hello . I am hungry . I want food in my bowl . I want food in my bowl right now . I am not dying-do not put that goo on my food . Here comes a furball . I want to go out . I want to come in . I just put a mouse in the bureau drawer . I did not break that vase . Why did you get out the cat carrier? . I do not want to go to the vet . Please kill the dog next door. . . .
Bonjour . J'ai faim . Je veux qu'on remplisse mon bol . Je veux qu'on remplisse mon bol tout de suite . Je ne suis pas en train de mourir-ne mettez pas cette chose gluante sur ma nourriture . Voici une boule de poils . Je veux sortir . Je veux rentrer . Je viens de mettre une souris dans le tiroir de la commode . Je n'ai pas cassé ce vase . Pourquoi avez-vous sorti le porte-chat? . Je ne veux pas aller chez la vétérinaire . Je vous en prie, tuez le chien de la maison d'à côté. . . . Order "The Complete French for Cats".
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