With Christmas fast approaching most of us have thoughts for our family. My children and grandchildren may as well live at the end of the earth but my thoughts are with them.
My cat Tazza has featured in these posts recently and this is how I described her arrival in my home to my grandchildren a few years ago.
Raining Cats and Dogs
One dark winter’s night the wind was gusting under the bridge over the stream at the bottom of my garden and the rain was coming down in torrents when my neighbours, the Mills family, heard a howling outside their house. Mother Mills rushed out expecting to find at the very least a pack of dogs whining and baying at the wind but to her surprise there was nothing to be seen.
Mother Mills went back inside for her big torch and bravely came out for another look to find where the cries were coming from. Then she saw it! A tiny kitten clinging to a narrow moss covered stone ledge on the side of the bridge a few feet above the raging brook! It may have been a tiny kitten but she was making enough noise for a whole family of them!
Mother Mills managed to rescue the soaking morsel from her precarious perch and took her into the house where she dried her with an old towel and gave her some warm milk to drink. When she was dry and her tummy was full of warm milk the little kitten quitened down, curled up and fell asleep as if nothing bad had happened to her. Where she came from and how she got there was to remain forever a mystery.
The Mills family had two more cats at that time called Zach and Clovis and when those two saw this strange little mite drinking their milk and sleeping in their bed they were none too pleased and set off around the house complaining loudly to anyone who would listen! So, to keep the peace in their house Mother Mills asked me if I would like a kitten and I’m sure you know what the answer must have been because that little kitten is now Tazza, a full grown pussycat.
She is a really brave and clever pussycat and one day when I didn’t have my car I put her in her travelling basket strapped to the pillion seat of my motorbike and took her to the vet’s surgery for her appointment. She didn’t complain at all. In fact she seemed to enjoy whizzing through town like that!
Another time when she was quite young she came on a two hundred miles journey in the car to Scotland. That’s quite a long way so we stopped for a comfort break at a service station on the M6 where she walked on a lead and did her toilet behind some trees as if it was something that happened every day.
Shame she blotted her copybook at her grannie’s house though. The young Tazza found it all very strange and managed to do a ‘whoopsie’ on the cushion of a chair in the sun lounge. Poor Tazza! She was very embarrassed and so was I but the cushion cover cleaned good as new in the washing machine and I’m pleased to say that Tazza hasn’t had any ‘accidents’ since.
Another trick that Tazza get’s up to is to try and walk along the narrow edge of the bath when I am having a soak in the tub. Now cats are not supposed to like getting wet and I would have thought that after her problems on the bridge as a kitten, she would keep well away from ledges and water but no, daft cat that she is, she is never happy unless she is in danger of slipping into the bath amongst the soapy water!
It’s the same with the bathroom sink. If I leave the cold water tap running just a little bit, she will climb up into the sink and play with the running water for ages. First catching some water in her paw and then pretending to drink it.
Tazza sleeps in the house most days and goes out hunting for rats and mice at night. Sometimes in the morning she will bring a live one home as a present. That’s one present I would rather not have! One thing hasn’t changed and that is the row she makes when she arrives back at the house around five or six o’clock in the morning! She is louder than an alarm clock and I always have to go downstairs and let her in before she wakes the neighbours!
Sometimes I think that Zach and Clovis were right when they thought she was a right little nuisance but I love her to bits and am so glad she came to stay.
Don’t be fooled – Tazza is the boss!