Friday, 4 May 2012
Look what the cat dragged in
I love my cats, I really do. They are like child No3 and No4. They are squishy, cuddly and purr like tractors in the night. They keep me company and wait for me to come home, just like any dog, the tabby one especially loves me and I rather like that. She's my cat and the ginger one is his. But they have this terrible habit of killing stuff, pointless, murderous killing, great gobfulls of shrews, mice, small birds, a mouth full of mole and once a rabbit who hid behind our bookshelf for 4 days before I caught it. The tabby brings them in dead, maybe a body part delicately placed at the bottom of the stairs or perhaps a puked-up whole one on the door mat. The ginge however, brings them in alive - I have become quite skilled at catching them with a dustpan and brush or a wellington boot - but not this time I'm afraid, and that is where we are as I write. Both cats are camped out by the fridge, waiting for the poor little terrified rodent to poke his nose out, they have been there for 3 days no lie, just waiting. You've got to give them their due, patient bloody things. Anyway, I can't move the fridge because its enormous, so the mouse will probably die under there, a long slow mouse death, and then rot, smell the utility out until the flies find it, lay eggs, maggots appear and wriggle for few days, turn into pupae and the flies hatch and fly away. You can tell I have been through this process before, natural decomposition yes, but not in my house thank you very much.
Its a really strange habit that we have, inviting animals to live with us in our homes, treating them like humans, one of the family. Speaking to them in catty speak, the same sort of voice reserved for newborn babies, pretending that you are their mother (ahem, well I do that - can't speak for all cat owners obviously). They are probably going to be with us for another 15 years or so, main road depending, the kids will have left home or at least be doing some sort of gap year in an orphanage in Tanzania or drinking cheap beer on Bondi beach contemplating tatoo's. And I will be 53. Such a difficult age to imagine, life's rich tapestry will have woven a more complicated and interesting pattern while the cats look on, purr and kill stuff.