You would assume that at the end of a day which involved work, meeting a friend whom you haven’t met before and her husband and their dog (who was for some reason terrified of a wee puppy 3x smaller than her) on the other side of town and a little more, for whose larger camper you negotiated a parking space, and a day which involved you taking a total of 12 trains and buses to negotiate your way to your various destinations, and finding a pub which would allow dogs – you would assume at the end of such a day, when you reach home at 00:25 am, a cat won’t jump out at you from the darkness when you reach your front door. And if indeed you did expect such a feline assault, you would expect to placate it with a saucer of milk. But no. After said saucer of milk has been warmed (to cat’s preferred temperature) and said Moggie has consumed her drink you have to resign yourself to watching the Mog playing with something mysterious on the floor. What is it you wonder, another of her fur balls (god so many!)? You move closer to examine it and realise with horror it is the largest spider you have ever encountered in your life, your life which suddenly feels very short. You grab your suitcase and attack said spider. You lift suitcase, peek under and spides is still alive. Mog looks at you. You look at Mog. The spido starts moving, you start screaming, the Mog doesn’t do anything. You attack spidy with your furry slippers. You decimate it before it eats you. Peace at last? No? No. Mog tries to eat the spider’s remains. A gory site. You don’t know whether you should let the cat lick the hairy, squished legs off the floor or give the slain critter dignity in death. You choose the latter and cover his body with your suitcase. The Mog tries to move your suitcase. You just want this to end and for the cat to go to its rightful owner (you don’t have a cat flap yet and can’t wait around with the doors open). Mog sits down and decides she wants to lave herself on your rug. You give up and eat some cereal while updating your blog.
When I returned home tonight, i could see the shadows on my doormat come to life from a distance. Milky Whey stretched herself the way only cats can, her heavy paws the only bits of white in her sleek, black fur. She pretended like she was leaving and I coaxed her, talking cat (gibberish), to stay for a bit. She allowed me to scratch her head and so happy was I to see her again, I tweaked her sweet little ears too. She rewarded me with some deep purring and circled my legs while I opened the door. She would only come in after I turned on the lights, and even then hesitatingly. She bumped into my boots and ran out in a funny fat cat dash when she knocked them over. And then back in again when i called her. She remembered her little plate all right, her eyes resembling round saucers at the sight of the milk can. Two servings later she sat aloof outside the door, her green eyes reflecting light, demanding to be left alone.