Wednesday, April 26, 2006

Anyone who had a heart

Between her garden and cats, she chose her garden. And a very nice garden it is too. I've tried many times to convince Eileen disliking cats is maybe fair under certain circumstances; not liking me, Ferdinand the very handsome ginger tom cat is not acceptable. Ailurophobia is a terrible condition and one that I am determined to help her recover from; whether she likes it or not! One of the symptoms of this illness is a sufferer doesn't recognize they need help and worse refuses any aid that would be given.

The first stage of treatment is desensitisation, so, whenever Eileen was in her garden I would sit on the wall and just watch her (at a safe distance on health and safety grounds; the start of the treatment can be quite traumatic for patients who may become unpredictable even aggressive.) After a few weeks, she accepted my presence and even managed a few words.
"Bugger off."

Eileen soon realized that I would always be there for her. I had taken the first steps in gaining her trust. The next stage was to help her understand that she should allow herself to like me. It is surprising that anyone could dislike me but this is a cruel and debilitating sickness.

I would serenade her. I have a very good singing voice. It's loud and carries well and Eileen is a music lover; so like my singing = like me: Ferdinand ginger tomcat. Many have commented that Cilla Black (world famous Liverpuddlian chartreuse,) and I have a similar pitch. Anyway, the very first night, and after singing just the first verse of Cilla Black's 'anyone who has a heart,' Eileen's bedroom window flew open and she clapped her hands together in sheer enjoyment. The following night my repeat performance brought not only more applause but also her calling out my name,
"Ferdinand, bugger off."

The second stage of treatment had worked faster than even I dared hope and now she, and I, were ready for the third stage. This was more difficult because not only must she not have panic attacks when she saw me but she should look forward to my company. I would not let her see me for a week maybe two, (absence making the heart grow fonder,) she should then miss me, and then when I do reappear she will be overjoyed.

I managed to stay out of her sight for a couple of days, the third day she suddenly appeared and I had to make a dash for cover. Luckily, her shed door was ajar and I leapt in there. Quite a nice shed actually; large, big glass windows facing east capturing the morning light. Some sacking on a bench under the window and a box of, oh! Not a lot inside just a couple of bits of bubblewrap. A very nice box, it has a picture of a television on the side and the letters SONY. Nice and deep and comfy. Too comfy, I nodded off. Stupid of me, remiss of me, but a ginger cat of my calibre can admit to a few flaws, but then nothing is perfect not even me; although my faults are paltry in comparison to others I could mention -not naming any names but stripes and fish breathe come readily to mind. Anyway; I woke, stretched; and... and the shed door was closed! I checked the windows, they too were all securely fastened.

Hours passed. I was hungry, it was time for my tea and I needed a pee; in fact I was bursting. I sat down pondering my predicament. I needed to go home, I needed to eat and I needed to pee. And definitely not in that order. My bladder was absolutely bursting, What if it were to burst literally? Would I die, here alone?, my handsome ginger furry body in smithereens of stinky bits. No, this was not going to be my fate. Jumping down from the bench and climbing behind some shelving I found a little pile of sawdust and that was that. Oh the relief! I was not going to die of burst bladder syndrome. I scraped at the sawdust and made a very tidy job of covering my damp patch. I could not mask however; the fragrance of pure eau de ginger tomcat. The Ferdi fragrance, heavenly perfume of an angelic ginger cat.

In my comfortable state sitting on the bench in a pool of sunlight, I began to sing:
'Anyone who had a heart, Would take me in his arms and love me, too oo oo da dum , da dum da da da daaaaaaaa da da da daaaaaaa da do do.' Into my fifth rendition of this song I was quite oblivious to the shed door being flung open. But I did hear Eileen as she clapped her hands, the applause was thunderous, she shouted my name,
And again,
"Ferdinand you horrible smelly tomcat."
I bowed out, hightailed it back to my glass ceiling abode, applause and cheers ringing in my ears.
"Bugger off."
I'm most content, Eileen's treatment is almost complete and what a success it has been. Doctor Ferdinand the human healer and fine feline physician. I'm most content indeed.

'Anyone who had a heart would take me in his arms and love me, too oo oo...

1 comment:

Spunky said...

I, too, have experienced a similar response on a few occasions of my vocalization. I have been practicing speaking to the humans in their own words. Apparently I must be doing well because they always respond: "Spunky! For heaven's sake, be quiet!" It's lovely to be recognized for special talents!