My turn again. maybe I’ll open a page just for me. Well I’ve had all my jabs, I’ve been protected against fleas, lice and all the parasites you can name, she’s bought me a collar with an easy-opening fastener should I get hooked up in a tree, as well as my name and telephone number… I know they work because I’ve already lost two! However why should I stray, there’s a lot to keep me here. So now I go out into her garden, it’s nice really lots of moving grasses and flying things which however high I leap I can’t catch. She says if I get a bee in my mouth, I’ll be done for. I really like my human and I brought her a lovely present the other day. A lizard I caught. She hasn’t eaten it yet and put it outside . I wonder why? Anyway I’ve brought it back in. Perhaps she likes them when they’re a few days dead! Who knows. We have very regular times now. I jump onto her bed in the morning and ask her to tickle my chin and ears and she does. Then again at night I wait for her for more cuddles we sometimes even fall asleep together! Yes I must say I’m very satisfied with this place . 5-stars!
Well there’s really not a load of exciting things happening in my newly locked-down life, same for you I suppose. English lessons proceed apace the one cheerful spot of the day. However it is Spring and Spring means that everything lying buried under the soil is making its way upwards, breathing the air at last. There’s a lot of hard work to do in the garden, digging is the worst. I’m also having a lot of difficulty tying in my roses as my big beauty bush is in the way and I really need someone to stand on the other side of it from me to pass me the long shoots which I want to tie in. I also need to buy a pair of leather gauntlets to do my roses with, most of them are old roses so are very prickly. I’ve been moving plants in the hopes that the better places will encourage growth. I generally experiment because they don’t always obey the rules and I like to plant the same one in two different places to see which does better. Gardening is good training for patience I think and probably a metaphor for investment! The narcissus so loved by people who come from Cambridge are bulking up every year so one year you get an array of leaves, the next, with a bit of luck, you get the flowers too. I need a specular border to the path under the rose pergola and I’m thinking tulips though the narcissus are slightly more precocious. Well I met with a weird problem the other day. I went to the chemists to buy some litmus paper because I’d like to try and make my own acidulated water for my acidophiles, but when I got back I found to my horror that these strips were only made to measure your pee! Life of a gardener! But I have to report great success with my Bokashi now the weather’s warmer, I dug it into my beds as a feast for my worm colony (sadly depleted by the damned blackbirds) so, as they say everything in the garden’s lovely!
I have to give it to her, she does try. Mind you my opinion of humans is not really very high as you know. And have you seen how they treat dogs? We’ve got an enormous dopey dog living next door. It lollops about, no elegance, no grace ,it slobbers, and how it barks! Sometimes I come into the house because I can’t stand the cacophony it makes but mostly I show myself behind the wire fence just long enough to make it bark, then I run away. That’s a terrific game because its owner then scolds the dog and calls it inside !I suppose that’s mean of me really, but it’s such fun. I’ve been to have some more vaccines and stuff I’m not sure what for but she has a little booklet where the doctors write everything down. She does it for my good I know. I believe we animals are pretty expensive from a sanitary point of view.
Her garden is fantastic, though there are all sorts of flying, humming ,buzzing critters apart from the dog, so there’s a lot of fun to be had. I can’t imagine what she’d do if that big clumsy dog lived with her! I’m very dainty and walk on tiptoe so I don’t think I’ve caused any damage. Mind you she doesn’t always understand. I saw she moved her dvd’s, tidying she calls it, so I’ve started on her books. I don’t think she was very pleased when she found them all over the floor but really, all she has to do do is put them in order and put them away.
I have one olive tree in my garden, planted near to the rose pergola. It has been pruned by me on advice and multiple photos to a friend in Sardinia, into an open vase shape. So I was extremely proud of it when in its first year it bore a couple of olives, yes two, a few more the next but this year quite a lot. I enjoyed harvesting them and got several, enough to fill 8/9 jars. I found some information on the net and religiously changed the water I had soaked them in for twentyone days. After that journeys up and down to my cellar to bring them into the light and prepare a solution of brine. In the meantime they afforded a hugely enjoyable lesson when my students joked that they would help me; one fed up with her job, would like to help harvest, another said she’d like to do the marketing, still another thought she could design the label. Wow, all for one little tree! Then of, course I forgot about them. I left the olives in the cellar for too long in the first strong brine solution. When I tasted them, they were awful. But wait, maybe it’s just me, I had to stay in the pronto soccorso for 24 hours once owing to lack of salt because I don’t like it and rarely eat it, so maybe it’s just my natural aversion to salt. I waited for my kids to come and they said it wasn’t dramatic but yes, maybe it’d be better to wash them.
So mad searches on internet, frantic phone calls to anyone who knew anything about olives. By now it’s high drama. Then I remembered a dear friend, ex-student and chemist in the food industry. Several telephone calls and text messages later, the olives have been washed and soaked in oligomineral water with a slice of lemon for a couple of days (The lemon to protect from mould), tasted, and when found edible (not just edible actually, but pretty good) they have been put back in their jars in a new less salty brine solution, and will remain in it for the next 20 days when they will be tasted again. Fingers crossed. So now it’s very likely that there will be a new brand of lovingly hand-picked Lesmo olives which will cost the earth. That’s why I think Mr. Saclà needs to look out!
My human is a bit slow. It has taken me nearly 2 whole months to teach her that I would like her to come when I call. In the morning I’d quite like to share her cereal but she only leaves me the tiniest portion in her bowl. Never mind. She understands about feeding me in general, but we’ve had a long tug o’ war about meal times and I have had to let her win. So now we stick to something she calls breakfast, lunch, tea and supper. I have mananaged ,at last, to get her to come and stroke me while I eat, I thought she’d never learn. She also seems to like to play so I humour her. She’s made a big red ball out of string and tissue paper which she throws at me.(Actually it’s quite a good game but I try not to be too enthusiastic because as you know we cats have a reputattion for standoffishness and dignified disdain.)
However even I can’t manage dignified disdain all the time. I like to sit on her window sill and look at the birds. Damned birds: SHE GIVES THEM FOOD! Just let them wait til I get out there. We’ve had blackbirds, thrushes, sparrows, a robin (too cheeky by far) and lately some capuccino-coloured doves. She was pleased, said they “bode good luck and inner peace.” I’ve told you this before, humans can’t ever just enjoy their moments! Always searching for “meaning.”
However let’s get back to talking about play. The red tissue paper which she made the ball from was previously wrapped round her flower pot. Clare, the lady who came to fetch me from the hell of the animal refuge place, came and wrapped the pot in red paper saying it was more Christmassy. But I managed little by little to tear it off and we had tiny bits of red tissue paper all over the house. I think that’s where she got the idea from so I’m thinking up some more games for her. I do feel sorry for her because she sits in front of her machine (computer?) a lot and plays with the keys, so do I at times but it’s honestly not much fun. So now I’m on the look out to try and keep her busy. Last night I broke the water fountain thingie and she seemed to think that was both naughty and clever! Who can understand these humans! But I know she tries hard.