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Monday, 2 May 2016

What's New Pussy Cat

I haven't kept a diary but if I had I'm sure one fact would stand out. We spend more time talking to our cat than we do to each other.

I'm completely comfortable with that; honestly.

We have a ginger tom. He adopted us, or we adopted him about 7 years ago. He appeared at the end of the garden and after a while appeared in our house, on our laps and on our bed.

His "official" name is GingatheNinja: unofficially he's Bongo, Billy Bongo and Gingi.

He says very little. He doesn't have to as we do all the talking for him. His greeting on entering the kitchen is to wait to be stroked for about a minute. He says nothing. just rubs his face against your hand stares into your eyes and purrs deeply.

Verbal conversation is one way. "How are you doing?". " You don't like the biscuits - O.K. we'll try another brand the most expensive". " I know the neighbour's cat a pain. How are you feeling?"

You're on the loo: there's a scratch at the door and there he is on the bath staring at you as you complete your toilet. "What's up? Missing us? Want to play?" as you throw him a used toilet roll and he bats it back and shimmies his tail waiting for the next play. "O.K. I need to go to bed" and he  trots into the bedroom and up onto the bed.

He's on the bed and staring at you, eyes slightly closed and purring deeply. His fur is so deep that you can't stop stroking him and you whisper sweet nothings into his ears. We both comment on his wonderful profile and ask him to indulge us with a film star pose. He lifts up his right leg and licks his bum."Wonderful" we say. " You're such a clever cat."

On the bed he lies between us. He says nothing, simply purrs and purrs. The silence is awkward and we talk to him for ages. About the weather and how it affects his fur, the EU referendum and whether if cats could vote would we be in or out. But much of our conversation is simply telling him how beautiful he is : how privileged we are to have him chose us and what a joy he is. We also spend much time telling him not to scratch the carpet, the sofa, the stairs, my hand. It's like water of a duck's back: he stares, lifts his leg and starts grooming and guilt ridden we apologise.

Some people will say it's simply projection. He's a dumb puss with a little brain and we're just projecting a personality onto him. All I can say is "Try telling him that."

And frankly I don't care. Sharing our house with this sentient being is a joy. He is a real presence, a personality that is so bound up in our day to day life it's painful. We look forward to seeing him at the backroom window banging on the glass to be let in. Sitting at the top of the stairs after midnight as you ask him how he passed his day. As he chases after a pair of tights and climbs onto the table and stares out of the window. You try to strike up a conversation.

"What are you thinking about old boy?"

And he looks at you with those soft green eyes. " Wouldn't you like to know"  

2 comments:

The Poet Laura-eate said...

We've got a ginger tom called Mr Cheeky and he fully lives up to his name! We also inherited a silky black tom called Django from some feckless twentysomething male neighbours who got evicted from their party flat and somehow managed to leave him behind (ie assume one of their mates was going to pick him up). Luckily he was already good friends with Mr Cheeky so he has ended up living in the lap of luxury and with the perfect playmate. Django is bathroom monitor and toilet roll terminator. Mr Cheeky just rules the neighbourhood, keeping the dogs in order with a good whack on the schnozzle.

Barry Coidan said...

Yep, cats are the top dog. But don't tell either of them that.