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"The evening before I left, Marlowe went off his feed and began throwing up. Sometimes cats do this sort of thing; who knows why? Winnie has always had a touchy stomach. From the day I brought her home from the animal shelter seventeen years ago (she was sleeping in a recently cleaned litter box when I first laid eyes on her) she's been a recreational puker. The same holds true for Sammy, the big, elderly, mostly Siamese male we inherited from Rebecca's mother. Several times a week, I hear his distinctive retching as he pursues his hobby - 1) Find an upholstered or carpeted surface and heave. Try to splatter. 2) Move forward several feet before releasing second volley. 3) Repeat until reservoir is emptied.

Employing a technique our vet refers to as "Scarf 'n Barf," Sammy and Winnie view food as ammunition to be downed quickly with water and then blown back up in a soupy melange garnished with fur. They trot off afterward with an improved opinion of themselves to await their next feeding."

~ from "Providence of a Sparrow: Lessons from a Life Gone to the Birds" by Chris Chester

This is a really great book, hilarious and poignant. (At one point the author comes into possession of two male zebra finches who have a special relationship. The author terms it "homofinchiality.") If you like birds or animal memoirs, it's a great read.
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