Tuesday, 8 September 2009

Infatuation or true love?

Dogs have owners, cats have staff
Meet two of the most important males in my life. These two brothers were born in April 2001 of different fathers (the hussy). This is Banjo, quiet, nervous, gentle, noble, always velvet pawed, given to binge eating and stretching full length across the middle of the bed, with a stride reminiscent of John Wayne's and a purr which turns into a song when he's specially happy :

... generally overpowered by Rusty, who is very vocal, cheeky, brave enough to be completely unfazed when the fox terrier opposite runs threateningly towards him (thus making the little dog turn tail and run), with the grace and delicate walk of a ballet-dancer, yet capable of sending everything flying in his path as he "nimbly" entrechats his way across furniture with china ornaments on it, or dressing-tables with perfume bottles and creams carelessly left there by his female staff, which he likes to do when the house is quiet, say 3 a.m.
Other pieces of furniture carry the proof that his claws are sharp, and though he knows better than to use them on his providers of food, treats and cuddles, nevertheless finds it very useful when ensuring that when he's picked up he doesn't fall off, or inadvertently slide away from a warm shoulder. The only creature known to man that can draw blood affectionately:

Last week I was visited by Gaby, a hirtherto virtual friend from Germany whom I 'met' on the internet, and who has been giving me invaluable advice on how I should get my translation published (see two posts ago). I was nervous about spending a week in the company of a stranger, but I needn't have worried. She's a lovely person (who unfortunately prefers not to be photographed) of my own age and who loves dogs and cats. As soon as she and Rusty set eyes on each other... well, I don't know who was smitten first. Just as well I'm not a jealous person.
They had eyes only for each other all week, what with the lengthy conversations, gazing into each other's eyes, and yes, I've got to say it, sleeping in the same bed. When Gaby departed last Friday she had the incriminating furry evidence all over her clothes and belongings, goodness only knows what her two golden retrievers thought when they welcomed her back.
We had a difficult weekend, when much love and counselling had to be supplied on tap, as Rusty tried to get into the room where she had slept, mewing piteously, or perched stubbornly on my camera bag by the door, refusing to be comforted, and when picked up would jump off my shoulder almost immediately without even breaking the skin, although it was (rather generously I thought) on offer. We finally gave in and left the door open one evening, and after a night by himself on the spare bed, he's been fine ever since.
John too thinks she was rather wonderful, and though we all hope she'll come back again to stay, Banjo and I just look at each other and roll our eyes when we hear them talking about her...


Zanna, travelling tart, getting ready for her next trip said...

I think each of us leans more to one or other (cats or dogs that is) and I'm definitely a dog person but I still enjoy cats and your phrase about cat's having staff is just so apt. It's always on their terms isn't it? Whereas with dogs it's always that unconditional love. A lovely post that made me smile! Z xx

Sara said...

I am also the staff to a very particular cat. And he does draw blood with affection sometimes. He's currently draped across my computer desk - all 20 pounds of him. Gotta love them!! Thanks for a wonderful post today.

The Dash! said...

I am a massive cat lover and could just watch them sun themselves or watch them eat, laze or purr themselves silly each day. I loved this post. You're cats are just beautiful (your ginger one looks like my Garfield...who earned his name in every way - especially the eating part!)

oozyxena said...

I love this post, it has inspired me to introduce our new puppy on my blog, of which I should have done some time ago.....what was I thinking?

Your cats are beautiful Caroline, if I was to have a cat I think I would love to have a ginger tom. to me they look a little mischievous... I like that!


Reddirt Woman said...

I love the boys.. I think I would have to be more partial to Banjo... I think it may have been the ability to do the major stretching... or perhaps his John Wayne stride or his singing ability. But then Rusty being the 'bull in the china shop' sort of cat pulls my heartstrings, too.

And you, Miss Caroline, are a wonderful story teller...

Thank you for sharing your boys with us. I feel like I know you a bit more now.

Lonicera said...

Thank you all for the lovely remarks. In fact "the boys" is exactly what I call them! They both like to drape themselves on my desk too - and sort of shove out of the way any bits of paper or books which make them uncomfortable. I'm not the tidiest of people at the best of times, and now I just leave them to it.
When they get on the bed, once I've pushed him away from where he starts out, which is lying exactly where I had intended to, Banjo will drape himself across the foot of the bed (a metre long when properly stretched) and Rusty likes to get inside in the winter months, and keeps me awake with his purring - or sneezing.

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