I don't know what it is with this cat. It's the weirdest-sounding meow I've ever heard. No information is provided. My hope is that there isn't something wrong, that the cat hasn't had a stroke or something. Meows vary enormously, so maybe this cat is merely old or has strange vocal cords.
My cat Bentley barely meows at all, and when he does, it's soft and gentlemanly. The exception is when he has to go somewhere in his carrying case. He knows nothing good will come of this. When we boarded him for ten days so we could go to Hawaii, we thought things would go smoothly because we boarded him at the same place several years ago, and he seemed OK. Maybe he remembered having a good experience.
Instead, he meowed piteously in the car all the way to the place, which is something like a luxurious cat hotel. He would have his own room, his own window, individual play time/attention each day. But Bentley didn't do well at the cat hotel, and even lost weight. When he got home, he sat there drinking water for five minutes. We will never leave him like that again - surely it's easier on him to stay in the house and have my daughter-in-law check in on him and feed him and clean his box. He'd still be lonely, but not so devastated.
It's true that a pet can tie you down, but we don't have a lot of funds for travel anyway. People say cats are aloof, that they offer no companionship, but Bentley greets us at the door whenever we have been out, sits in my office chair, curls up on my lap (though he only "makes biscuits" on Bill's lap, for some reason), and loafs around on my bed. He never wants to be far from us. We never planned to have a cat - my little lovebird Paco died after I had had her for only a few weeks - and Bentley was a grown-up cat, not the kitten everyone advised us to adopt. But Bentley had his needs, and we had ours, and they somehow meshed. Now we can't imagine our lives without him.