Wednesday, June 24, 2009

One lost cat

She woke early to a blue sky day that promised summer and butterflies. The morning began to fill with gentle noises, a swallow or two, the strange vocalization of a black rook, wren and robin song and then cathedral bells, hushed and distant. She sat on the bench in the garden and chuckled. She was reading, and try as we might we could not get between Her and the book, even though we managed a cat pile of three on her lap! We did not want Her to read this book. We did not want Her to realize that She too is Under the Paw.

Tom Cox, who wrote the book, has six cats too, and he knows who is in control. The last thing we need Her to do is realize this. But today we stole Tom away from his cats and he had came to walk with us.

Past Glyn's house where Nadolig basked in the warm sun and looked very Mediterranean.

Up the hill where the grass gave off small breaths of pollen as we walked by, like smoke wisps, and sun bleached out the colours.

We were walking slowly. I have a sneezing cold again and Maurice became camera shy. Elmo and Kiffer kept being distracted, by cows, butterflies, long grass and the rattlewinged dragonflies. And the sun, so hot. By the gate Kiffer decided that Tom was definitely part of the cat clan, more cat than human and very comfortable to lie on. But then Kiffer hid in the long grass and bracken. Too hot to work and walk.

We walked on, Elmo and I, up the hill to the high top where we sat for a while in sunshine and warm wind , watched the birds fly, buzzards and ravens and kestrel, and posed for David.

On the other side of the hill it was warmer, but after a while it was time to go. So back down the hill to find Kiffer. But now Elmo decided the only place to be was in the shade, so off he went, into the long grass and bracken too! She does not like to leave us up the hill, so while She searched I hung around Tom's neck like a scarf, but no Elmo, no Kiffer, so down the hill we went without them.

They sat for a while and talked in the garden and David took photos of cats and the house and Tom and the wheelbarrow, but still no Elmo, no Kiffer. Then Tom and David said goodbye and She went back up the hill to find the naughty ones. Sure enough there was Elmo, at the top of the hill, seeing how well his fur went with the golden grass. He seemed pleased to see her. But no sign of Kiffer.
She went restlessly back to work.
Kiffer did not come for supper when She called us in.
Later, back up the hill, with Elmo and Martha, calling, calling, and hearing, maybe the wind or the cry of a buzzard, bleat of a lamb, rustle of grass. No Kiffer. Calling, calling. The lowing of a calf, a rabbit in the grass, mouse squeak, gate rattle. No Kiffer. Now She was really worried. Kiffer is sociable, would go to anyone. Might he have wandered off, away over the hill? Could he really be lost? Would we see him again? He has not been long with us but he is written so large in his kiffed character, a small bear of a cat.
The hill seemed so big all of a sudden.
We walked back down, slowly, slowly, looking back, calling, calling. No Kiffer. She would try again tomorrow and hope that he would be safe in the short night, from foxes and badgers. Down through the farmyard, She worried. Should She go back for one more look? Maybe he had gone further up? We walked through the gate and there was Glyn, outside his house. And Kiffer, stalking nonchalant through the long grass, not a care in the world.
I would say by the way she stooped to pick Kiffer up and cuddle his great cat weight close that She was pleased to see him.


trash said...

It is always a test to see how much we can worry. They plot together.

Jennifer Rose said...

i love that first picture! :D Go perfect with the book topic lol

glad that Kiffer is safe and sound :)

ChrisJ said...

Oh! I really thought you had lost Kiffer. I've been visiting Tom's blog for quite some time. I would like to buy his book, but we have so many books that my husband has had to rent a small office to keep all his in. We are now at the stage of down sizing, as our sons will not be too happy to go through all our 'stuff' at our demize.
So glad all cats are safe.

The Ginger Darlings said...

Buy Tom's book Chris. You will love it. My cats were staright away all over him, even Maurice who hates everyone except me. The book is great. But get the hardback. Read, enjoy, then give to a friend. But I bet when you have read you will find that you want to keep it and will buy other copies for friends.
So glad Mr Kiffer is safe and, well, I was going to say sound. He is a very special creature, full of strangeness.

Rusty, Geiger, Sporran said...

We're sorry about the sneezies. Maybe it's a grass allergy? And we are so glad the Kiff is back.
We think we'd love Tom Cox cos he picked our Dad, Milo, as one of the "tough cats" last year.
Rusty says: Milo is not tough at our place;he shows me "propah respec'"

Celia Hart said...

What a lovely day - and what a good joke of Kiffer's to pretend to be lost LOL! We love getting the boss in a tizz and then getting a big cuddle and extra biscuits :-)

We heard Tom being interviewed by that nice lady called Lesley on BBC Radio Suffolk. He was sitting on her blue sofa, the one the boss sat on when she went to chat with Lesley last year.

Hope your sniffles get better soon

The studio assistants

Anonymous said...

That was a really heart-stopping moment but so pleased Kiffer turned up! The worst part is being so frantic and then the complete unconcern which they display -" why do humans WORRY so much?"


Lydia said...

Whew! You really had me worried. I'm up late and if the story had turned out differently I'm not sure I could have slept. But with such happy reunion news this means that Feather and Willow can now take me to bed. Shiva will join us later...she's in the chair dreaming of your hill.

The Curious Cat said...

How come Tom Cox came to visit? Lovely to see two bloggers meeting up and writing about each other in their blogs!

Unknown said...

Jackie, I have voted for you !! Also have posted a link to you on my Facebook, so my peeps can vote for you too ! I sure hope you win !! Good Luck :)

quiltcat said...

What a huge relief to know that Kiffer is o.k. and home safely. Whew! So i guess he just wanted to visit Mr Griffin and Nadolig. How is Mr Griffin doing?

Pixie, i'm very sorry to hear that you've got an upper respiratory infection again. I sure hope it doesn't hit you as hard as the last one.

Thanks for the introduction to Tom Cox, his blog, and his book. I headed straight off to to order one!

Morning Glories in Round Rock said...

Oh, what good news! Sometimes a cat just has to go off on his own adventure--so glad it was a short one.

Griffin said...

I suppose there was always the possibility that Kiffer had decided to follow Tom to sleep on him!

Glad he decided to come home tho', cos he would have been much missed and he would have missed you too.

Some people are just natural cat-magnets and Tom is obviously one of them! Reminds me of having a cat snoozing on me... oh how I miss it!

Terra said...

I am going to buy a copy of Under the Paw; it sounds like fun. Thanks for pointing it out to me here.
I hope your roof is on and all is warm and dry at your house by now. That looks like a very major and disruptive project for Her, the Gingers and all involved.