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Farewell, Fair Elzie
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I didn't want to post about this until I found a picture, but I finally had a chance to go through my albums today. I only turned up one; I'm sure there are more, filed away somewhere, but this one will do.

In college I rescued a ferret from an abusive home. Her owner left the country for an extended vacation of indeterminate length, leaving the ferret with her roommates, but making no provisions for the animal's care -- she didn't ask her roommates to feed the ferret, didn't leave any food, nothing. One of the roommates was my good friend Katherine, who knew I was looking to adopt one, so she brought the ferret to me.

I loved Elzie. She was the runt of her litter, a small, good-natured sable with a tendency to steal spiral-bound notebooks and, of course, socks. She hopped around, she chittered, she was generally adorable. I had her for a couple of years. But when I decided to move to California, I knew I couldn't bring her with me, so my family took her in. Eventually she lived with them longer than she lived with me. I saw her when I went home to visit in 2001, but that was the last time.

I won't see her again. Elzie died last week; my sister found her. She'd been sick, probably suffering renal failure, but mom says she was in good spirits and didn't seem to be in any pain. I wish I could have seen her again before she died. I really wish that a lot. But I take comfort in knowing that I took her away from a bad situation, and helped her have a good life with people who loved her and played with her and made her hammocks out of old laundry bags.

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