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Date: January 19, 2003 at 12:20:08
From: Mary Greene Stewart, [cache-rm04.proxy.aol.com]
Subject: Re: Superstitions on the River ?


Thanks Jane (my sister) for mentioning 'Tippitywitchit.' It was in 1960, we were on the St. Paul trip with some good and loyal passengers from Santa Barabra, CA. They knew how much I loved animals-so when the boat reached Davenport (southbound)Mr. Roberts went up to a pet shop and bought a little black kitten and gave it to me. She was a darling animal; but like many petshop cats, she was not very healthy. By the time we got to St. Louis, I could see she was in grave distress. Therefore I put her in a shoebox and took her to a vet. She was diagnosed with worms, etc. and treated. There is a superstition on the river to the effect that cats are very bad luck on a boat. The Capt. Paul Underwood and Chief Engineer, Fred Barrows would have had a fit and refused to take the boat back to Cincinnati if they had been aware of this little animal's presence aboard the DELTA QUEEN. The whole thing had to be kept a secret. I kept the cat in the bathroom in my stateroom (204)with a litterbox of shredded newspapers. As sick as she was, she always used her box, like a good kitty.
After we left St. Louis and got down to Cape Girardeau, the sky darkened-a terrible storm struck, almost tornado-like clouds appeared. I thought perhaps the superstition might be true. However, we made it through the storm and all was well.

The trip concluded without tragic consequences-and the little cat lived to be 18, and had many litters of healthy kittens. The DELTA QUEEN also seems to have 'nine lives'and still cruises the inland waters.

Mary Greene Stewart


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