This week’s post is allied to Alan’s black and white photo of the legs of an embracing couple, with a (probably ginger ) cat stepping between them.
Anyone who even knows me vaguely will have realised that I am Cat Woman. Not the glam one from the film, the bonkers old one with all the polythene bags who befriends stray kittens and wants to bring every unwanted cat in Europe home and look after it. Yes, just like Brigitte Bardot, but with less tan As a child, living on a farm, we had our fair share of abandoned animals, but one cat made it his mission to become part of our family. By the time I was 18 months old and toddling, I was feeding this cat, and after our old collie died, he appeared near the house. Needless to say, he wheedled his way in, slept in front of the fire and lived to a ripe old age. We never named him, as we always thought he would disappear one day, just as he had appeared, but he was still around for my 18th birthday.
Subsequent cat boarders were mainly of the “my landlord doesn’t allow pets, can you take him for a while?” type and it was a long time before I had a cat to call My Very Own. I rescued Brian from a friend’s flat where the flatmates were being less than kind. I didn’t like to leave him Home Alone so I used to stuff him down the front of my jacket and travel around Edinburgh with a large kitten buttoned into my top. It was probably the highlight of my life, from the point of view of male attention I went to the ABC Cinema in Lothian Road in Edinburgh one night to see a double bill of “Life of Brian” and “Blazing Saddles”, and the kitty came with us. He slept throughout the whole thing and was thus named Brian. He had the run of several student pubs in Edinburgh and, even as a sizeable cat, still liked to travel in my jacket. I remember being in a fish and chip shop in Fountainbridge one night when a man came in with a very agitated greyhound. While I was waiting on my chips, the dog kept whining and trying to sniff at me, and the owner kept telling him to shut up. One of them knew I had a large cat secreted about my person – a large cat who was also getting a wee bit annoyed. I suppose my scars don’t show much now, after all this time.
Fast forward to the year 2000 and I managed to find a litter of kittens and bagged two – the most inquisitive one, and the cutest one out of the litter. The most inquisitive one went the way of all curious cats, and after he was 18 months old I never saw him again. The cutest one, Bumble, is currently kipping on the bed Thankfully. Here he is
When my partner, Adrian, and I got together, he was very blase about Bumble, and I was used to Bumble sleeping on the bed with me. Where he BELONGED. After a few grumbles from Adrian and nights where he shut the cat out of the bedroom (and the cat ripped chunks out of the carpet) Adrian finally accepted that he could either sleep in the cat basket in the hall on his own, or join me and Bumble in the bed. It has been a happy tale ever since