Moon, a seven-year-old Siamese cat who jumped from his owner’s truck at the West Tisbury Farmers’ Market June 23, is back home.
His name notwithstanding, Moon is not adventurous at all. He doesn’t like cars or strangers but is happy as can be at Breezy Pines Farm on Tiah’s Cove Road where he lives. But one night during the last week of school he climbed into the back seat of the family truck for a cool, quiet snooze. It wasn’t until his owner, Travis Thurber, got to the Grange Hall to deliver his children, Brahmin, 9, and Cabot, 11, to the school bus that Moon woke up. He made his presence known the way Siamese cats do, in a loud-voiced way, so the truck doors and windows were shut as soon as the children had left for the bus. Travis helped his wife, Heather, set up her farm stand of organic eggs, vegetables and soap at the market. Then he headed back to the truck to take Moon home. But when he opened the door to get in, shy Moon — unnerved by all the Farmers’ Market brouhaha he heard around him — jumped out and into the hubbub and disappeared.
Travis went door to door along Music street and environs for the next several days asking cat-owners and friends to keep an eye out for Moon. He posted signs on telephone poles and trees with a photograph of sleek, slim Moon. Moon was sighted once near Shirley Mayhew’s on Look’s Pond Road, but then he slipped totally out of sight. The Thurbers — especially Travis’s brother, Ian, with whom Moon has always closely bonded — hoped he was making his way home, the way cats often do. Until then, they hoped he would find enough rabbits and mice to eat to keep him strong and well fed, and that sooner or later he would be loudly announcing his presence back on the farm that is two miles or so away.
Happily, it didn’t have to happen that way. Judy Bryant on the Middle Road, a cat owner herself, made a Siamese cat sighting one evening and called the Thurbers. By the time they arrived, however, Moon had gone. But the next day when Moon reappeared in the Bryant yard; the Thurbers were called and there was a happy reunion.
The Thurbers made note of the fact, however, that Moon was going in the opposite direction from his home. Perhaps, in time, he would have sensed that. After all, some years ago. a determined cat made the trek from a new home in West Tisbury back to the Lagoon in Vineyard Haven to the home and owner he loved.
And then there was Mr. Black, a notable traveling cat. In 1947, he managed to successfully walk from Stamford, Conn., where he had been sent to a new home, 1,000 miles back to his original home in Atlanta, Ga. The trip took him a month, but he made sure — in view of his name — that he arrived in time to celebrate Halloween.
In any case, Moon is snugly back on Tiah’s Cove Road after only a little more than a week of wandering in the West Tisbury wild. It doesn’t always happen that way.