Monday, 16 November 2009

Sunshine, Rain; Cats and Zebras...

Today the weather has been so blustery and changeable.  I woke in the night to rain splattering on the skylight, but this morning it was dry.  The wind is gusting out there though and has broken our new back gate, so that it won't stay shut and bangs about. I can't seem to get the lock to work - either it's the wrong key, or it's just too stiff.  The cat is disgusted and sulking on the spare office chair.

A word about our cat. He is fab. His name is Sherlock and he moved in shortly after we came to live here, 3 years ago.  He used to live next door, but when their new baby was born, he started visiting us for somewhere quiet to hide out.  When she started to crawl and discovered his tail - enough was enough - he moved in with us, for everything but meals and bed-time.  Apparently he had refused to go indoors for months when the first daughter was born.  He was miserable and getting thin and it was obvious that he didn't want to be there any more.

Everyone agreed it was better for him if we just let him stay, so we started to feed him and he's still here three years on. 

He has, of course, retained visiting rights for his old home and knows he will be welcomed if he chooses to go there - but of course it's having the choice that matters to him. He's an old man now - around 12 years old - and likes peace and quiet.  He has his favourite places, most of which involve soft cushions or warm pipes under the floor, and he just snuggles up and snoozes his days away. 

Which doesn't mean he can't hold his own in the battle for back-garden supremacy!  He is still the owner of his garden (which he does let us share with him), though he has conceded the old next-door garden to the cats on the other side.  This summer, when a new neighbouring cat had the temerity to saunter across the lawn, he chased it up the willow tree and stood on a lower branch, staring.  Once he'd made his point, he lay down on the step near the tree and slept.  The other cat was too terrified to come down and sat there shaking.  Eventually we felt so sorry for it that we bribed Sherlock to come indoors, whereupon the new cat fled and was seen streaking across the road, looking traumatised.

Normally though, he doesn't need to take such drastic action. He may be getting old, but most of the neighbouring cats seem to respect his patch and keep away, at least when Sherlock is there.  He likes to lie in the sunshine, toasting his tummy.  Just now he can't do that, so the office chair has to do. 

He's the softest old cat I ever met. My son can hug him, fuss him and play with him, with no worries that he will scratch or bite.  He is a Mens' cat first of all, but loves human company.  If D is home, Sherlock is wherever he is; if not, he is near J; failing that, Human No. 3 will do, even though I'm only female!  After all, I feed him most often, so I have to be tolerated. 

I made this layout on holiday in the summer. Funny how we miss him when we're away.

This is my current favourite Sock Pet. For some reason he's been on my mind today.  He is listed in my Etsy shop, but if he doesn't find a home soon, I may just have to sneak him on my new desk... I will definitely make another some time!


  1. what a great story! and a very lucky cat :-)

  2. Love your zebra, he's so cute.


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