Friday, December 16, 2005

A winter's tail

A nice winters day to day, sunny, bright, clear and crisp. No wind, purr-fect I lazed on the conservatory roof. The sun's rays reflecting off the glass warmed me through to my bones. I surveyed my territory from my lofty outlook.

Our neighbour has been gardening. She has redesigned her garden has been at it for months beginning in the spring. Apparently she is to have friends over from America. So axed was the white lilac, sawn the flowering bay, ripped out the jasmine. The hedging grubbed. And with the plants went the birds the mice, my dinner! I reckon she wanted to make the-other-side-of-the-pond buddies at feel at home, well they would if they are Vietnam vets after a napalm attack.

Anyway apart from the aesthetics -which as you are becoming aware I am a cat of refinement and good taste, the hunting is totally hopeless, too much open ground and quite frankly most of the wildlife has evacuated. We used to have a black bird with a white eyebrow (I kid you not,) and when he cocked his head to look at you you'd swear he was raising that eyebrow in the "oh really!" expression. But he didn't make it through last years winter, and not because he was any one's snack but because he was just old. I have noticed, when I'm in stand and stare mode (as in Wordsworth,) a black bird bobbing about with a white patch on his head reminding me of a wide centre parting or a narrow mohican. Son of I expect.

Speaking of hunting, at this time of year Martin - the male human of the household- goes on the Cadburys hazelnut whirl hunt. This is a Christmas annual event that starts at the end of October and lasts until the end of December. Last year he managed to bag two boxes. This year so far every expedition has ended in dismal failure. I sympathise and empathise, when a badly judged spring or a misplaced paw let you down it does make you cross with yourself. But when there is no prey well what can you do but lament? And Martin does a good lamentation.

"bloody cadburys."

"What sort of marketing's this?"

"Every year it's the same."

On and on.... that's part, I think of his festive season address, a bit like the Queen but louder (much) and with a cockney accent in fact nothing like the Queen more Alf Garnet.

Last night I stared at the sky through my glass ceiling. A wonderful invention glass, a great design a conservatory, you're outside when you're in and warm when it's cold. I was tucked in my cardboard box snug on a tarten blanket. Anyway the moon last night was huge, as large as... well bigger than I'd ever seen it. A big orange disc in the sky, very comforting... or should I put ginger ball? I've written both now. Oh well you choose. It was the largest it's been for eighteen years apparently and according to radio 4.

Talking of discs or round things one of Martin's stocking fillers is a his-and-hers cat badge or button called pretty cool for the she cat, and cool cat for the tom cat. Now if they were ginger they would be just too purr-fect .......!

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