Tails

What use are tails?

They are handy for balance, calculations, emotions and mostly undecidedness. They whip from side to side when friends are near, aiding pouncing preparation.

She says they can also be very handy at a distance. Well mine can be because of it’s white tip. She says she can see me for miles and miles. It also makes her very happy to see how happy I am when I see her and my tail flips straight up in the air, the white bit a touch heavy and bending it over a touch.

So how would it be to be without a tail?

I really can’t imagine.

But this little fella is going to have to.

My number one fan She Joa is looking after him at the moment. Sir Antonio Bandidas or Bandit for short, is about 11 weeks old and tomorrow a Green Tom will take his tail away, for good.

She says he is Bandito Badass as somehow he got a very bad infection and his tail has died. She says there is more to his story but the details are really quite icky! So he is going to have to grow up and learn to live without his tail. I suspect he’ll get very wiggly hips having to compensate.

She Joa says he is ever so friendly, purry, the most adorable kitten she has ever had! Well she didn’t know me when I was 11 weeks old, I’d have knocked his stripes off. Hopefully when he’s recovered She Joa and friends will find him a lovely forever home.

She says if we ever move back into a house to live all the time then she might think about being a Foster carer. But I’m not so keen on the idea as I might have to share my Dreamies or Webbox! With another cat!!!

Having said that as Bandit won’t have a tail he’ll be a different sort of cat so I might even share some of my Webbox with him.

If you fancy sending him a treat here’s a LINK

Recover well Bandit.

Heading Into The Friendly Cover.

Waiting

Well I’ve been quite quiet on here recently, that’s because She has been hogging the computer and tapperty tipping lots. Then She has been working and Tom has been tapperty tipping lots instead. Just when does a cat get chance to do some writing of her own!?

Life in Scarboreough (where the outside doesn’t change) was boring, yet I had to keep on my toes. So many cats about and not one friend to be found! I had an inside tree to keep me happy, from the top I could gloat at Bogie Face Alan and Fatty Betty. There was LOADS of room inside and several comfy beds to choose from. Well that was until they all got nice clean sheets and the doors got closed.

Dreaming of escaping

Tom thinks I became a junky for a week, Cannabis is what he thinks I had. If that’s the case he was my dealer, sprinkling it onto my food on an evening! Apparently it was meant to make me a touch more laid back, but with all those cats around I couldn’t lounge around.

I found myself being shoved into the cat caravan and then spending far too long getting all hot around the collar and trying to avoid the inevitable. She did try to help, but I was so glad when Tom stopped turning the wheel.

Hooray!!!

What was this I saw before me?! Oleanna!!!!!! Our proper inside.

House collar to boat collar

She locked us in the bathroom, wanting to check I was clean. Then She said, ‘Do you know where we are?‘ Of bloomin course I did! Just let me get through that door for a nice calm sit down and a bath please!

The inside smelt a little bit different to how I remembered it. A couple of sniffs and then I decided to sit on my shelf, keep myself out of the way as She and Tom would be busy. Things went away into cubby holes, I checked them out before they opened them up in case anything had moved in whilst we were away, but all was fine.

Outside there were views again, birdies to watch, water to be aware of. Life was back to normal, I could forget about lockdown in Scarboreough.

Where is it!

But hang on something was missing! I had to send them back to get it, I most certainly wasn’t going to join them. Tom said that they hadn’t forgotten it, but there just wasn’t space for it and anyhow they had to go and see Bill. Off they went leaving me to get settled back in. I checked things over, feed me shelf, my shelf, Houdini’s shelf, the curtains are too clean and the insides of them don’t have enough grip factor yet, but I’ll work on that once my claws have grown back. Just a shame she’d left the lid on my toy box, I’ve missed playing with Transgender Mouse.

Hurry up!

When they came back, the first thing into the boat was my missing item. She hadn’t even got in through the door properly before I was using it. My scratch post! Then she opened up the toy box and there were my friends again and the really good bouncy balls, they are pathetic in a house, but great on a boat.

Get on with it!

After a few days they went outside. It was time to let this outside go, they untied it and pushed it away. I wasn’t sure if they could remember what they were doing so had to sit on the back steps and shout at them through the door. Don’t forget to push the thingy! Put the ropes where you can lasso the outside again. I’m not sure they heard me, although She kept opening the slidey top and asking if I was alright. I was fine, but were they!!!

Nervous snoozing

I decided my nerves couldn’t take it any longer, so I had to go for a snooze and just hope they caught a good outside. After three nervous snoozes they tied one up. The view from the windows looked good. No trees or sideways trees, but plenty of friendly cover. It took them forever tying it up.

What’s out there?

‘You have an hour. NO friends home dead or alive, or putting them on the roof for later. No jumping in. No falling in. No bullying. Go and enjoy yourself.’

She and I had a little walk up the towpath to check it out then I was allowed to go solo. Here there were friends! Tasty friends, oh how I’ve missed them.

Towpath walks

Since then they have repeatedly tied up the marina outside. This means I can’t go out, the close proximity of friends has been used as an excuse.

Please can I go out

But I’ve been fairly happy just watching things and occasionally twanging the bolts on the back doors.

Trees!

They have also changed the outside several times. Sometimes with trees, other times fishermen (who apparently don’t require my assistance), other times some other boats. Apparently if the weather is good, the tide right and when She’s finished her working they will be letting go of this lot of outsides. They will make the outside go up and then it will zoom away and escape. She says I won’t be allowed out for a few days as it will all be tidal outsides, so I have to make the most of things now.

Best clean my paws first

I’d best lend She a paw with her working then they can get back to moving the outside properly again.

Ahhhhh!

It’s purringly good to be back in this inside.

This post also appears on Narrowboat Oleanna’s blog

Jabs, Drugs and a Pedicure

She and Tom have had their first jabs, they have to wait for ages to get their second one. I, being a cat had my first jab several years ago, my second followed just a couple of weeks later. Every year they take me for a top up, I wonder if they will get annual top ups too? I how ever didn’t get a sticker!

Cat Caravan

This was a bit different to last year. She brought out a cat caravan. This is different to my escape pod, not as nice and cosy, in fact the caravan is quite spacious inside and my arms fit through the front door. Then we headed off in the fast car, not too far, but far enough.

Here a She with a windscreen came to talk to She. No problems this year, I’m a boat cat at heart and would be requiring the best possible worm and flee treatment for a year please. Only the best for me!

A years worth

Windscreen She took me inside, listened to things, had a look at my teary eye and my teeth gave me a weigh and then my jab. I was returned to She and Tom, I was a little bit lighter than last year, well someone had to make up for the weight they’ve put on in lockdown! She then asked Windscreen She if travelling by car could be made less stressful for me, a suggestion was made and a leaflet added to my drugs stash. Off we went again and soon got back to the house thank goodness.

Monthly!!!

She was very happy until she noticed something about some of the boxes. There were four of them, but each one contained three flee treatments! She thinks I will hate her for ever!

I checked out my passport. This usually means I am granted shore leave for the next year. But She suggested that this year it also meant something else, that I would get to leave the shore behind! Maybe I’m going to be a boat cat again.

All stamped and correct

A couple of days later my food started tasting a little bit different, not bad, just different. Maybe this was a different flavour of poultry. I only eat poultry, fish is so last month!

Yesterday I was left in charge of the house with an extra early dingding. Then I was on my own, it got dark, it got light and I was still all on my own.

After twenty or so naps the front door opened. She and Tom were home. I was really pleased to see them and told them all about it. I kept telling them and then some more. That fishfinger sandwich smelled nice too, so I told them about that. All I wanted was head nudges and maybe a snack or two. She was a bit puzzled, why was I acting so oddly?

Could these be the culpret?

I didn’t know, I just wanted another stroke, some more Dreamies, I had the munchies! Then She looked at me all concerned. She sat and talked to me, was I okay? Did I feel odd? Well I told her but I know she didn’t understand! So I told her again.

She rang to talk to Windscreen She’s friend. I shouldn’t have anymore of the extra calming pills, these were making me not calm apparently and making me twitch! She would talk to her friend and see what was to be done.

Tom and She were being very busy, so I chatted to them all the time. I was told off when I tried dismantling the dishwasher! Chat chat chat, it got me some very nice cuddles that I don’t normally like, but today they were good.

She here. The nurse rang me back, apparently the Zylkene is totally natural and would have no side effects. I should keep giving them to Tilly until she’s had her car journey, but why was she getting shaky a little bit tremorish every now and then? I could take her in for a check up. So I booked an appointment. For the rest of the afternoon I had a hyper shadow where ever I went, constantly shouting at me. Well I had to tell her everything, right from the beginning, except I couldn’t quite remember where the beginning was!

The caravan came out again, I complained all the way to see Windscreen She. She and She chatted whilst I chatted to Tom in the car, then I went in. I had a full medical, everything checked over. Windscreen She left me to chat with She, saying I was a bit of a jumpy cat and that my teary eye maybe needed some ointment. She then came back to see me, we chatted and had a bit of a pampering session, I got a pedicure. Apparently even though I have my own inside tree I’m not climbing enough to do this myself. I just hope Windscreen She hasn’t trimmed my claws too much to inhibit my climbing skills.

A little something for my eye

If I wasn’t showing any sign of improvement tomorrow She should bring me back, maybe for a face pack! Apparently I wasn’t as chatty in the car on the way back. I was allowed a cushion next to She on the table and snoozed the rest of the evening, I was a bit warn out after all that chatting.

She has decided to go against Windscreen She’s advice and that today I won’t have any of my calming drug to see if that calms me down. She says it was as if I’d had three expressos or smoked the biggest spliff and the dishwasher really couldn’t take that much attention over the next week.

Low Fog

A real pea sooper!

Apparently the blind was stuck, so they couldn’t see. Surely that is the point of a blind, not being able to see? They got a new blind anyway and put it up.

But it’s clear up there

Now I could see that Tom could see something, but all I got was fog. Low lying fog.

Think my legs need to grow so that I can be taller and see over it.

Sunshine Stealer!

With the lovely warmer weather recently I’ve been spending a bit of time in the front outside. Here the gravel and paving get lovely and warm in the morning, great for stretching out on.

When She and I break for daytime dingding She comes outside with me to help soak up some sun, there’s been lots of it so plenty to go round. She sits on the wall and I have a good old sniff round, the occasional rearrangement of gravel and consider if the front flower bed would be suitably safe to make a deposit.

All wonderful…..

Until…….

Excuse me that’s my sunshine!

Shitty Shoes turns up!

Tom sprinkled something on the grass the other day which seems to have stopped Shitty Shoes from leaving his squishy deposits on the grass. Now that it smells much nicer out there, Shoes has decided to use up some of our sunshine!

Well I’m not having that!

Bum wiggle required

I chased him away several times and then settled back into rearranging the gravel. Then that smell returned, he was hiding behind the wall stealing sunshine again.

Back again!

He just doesn’t bat an eye lid, well his eyes are skew wiff, so it might just be hard for him. I ask him politely to shift. Go and find his own sunny outside. This doesn’t work. So I add a bum wiggle and a charge, this seems to work and he heads off down the street.

But then he reappears and sits in the shade under one of our benches! Just WHAT is the point of that!!

Sling your hook mate!

She thinks he’s either stupid or just wants to be near me. I think he is a very rude cat and all he actually wants is bits of dingding! He’s obviously been brought up by people who didn’t have the instruction book. ‘Never, ever, ever, ever give your cat human food’.

Are you deaf too!?

I have been brought up properly. Squinty eyed squitty bummed Shoes most certainly hasn’t!

Pink Fishy

Dear Tilly,

Due to a national shortage of dog and cat food pouches, we’re sorry if you’re not able to find your usual product at Sainsbury’s. We’re working hard to resolve this. We think the issue will be ongoing through the year, but we hope to get them back onto shelves as quickly as possible.

Sainsbury’s

WHAT!!!!

I can’t eat anything other than pink fishy food! Don’t they understand!

She says I used to like blue meaty food. Tom says I wouldn’t notice if they changed it to one with a fancier name. Little does he know how long I can last just on yellow biscuits.

They have tried, though. Tom struggled back from the shops a few weeks ago with a big box of pink fishy, but they soon went. Then they hunted round on the internet and found some.

Tilly 2 keeping an watch for the man with his van

These had to be delivered by a man in a van, all very exciting, 2 big boxes just for me! She and Tom sighed a sigh of relief. She said ‘that will last her three months’.

Pink food!

Salmon just isn’t what it used to be, neither is whitefish. Tuna and Coley are okay I suppose. Maybe I fancy something a little bit different. Maybe some chicken, or duck!

Didn’t I tell you, I don’t like fish anymore!

‘Grrrrrr!’

Are My Killing Days Over. 21st February

This post first appeared on http://www.oleanna.co.uk

Hello!

Today is what She calls my ‘Gotcha day’. Five years ago I was quite happily clambering over the high edge of a pooh tray heading towards a scratch post, stopping to sniff and kill a mouse en route, when the She I’d been staying with picked me up and walked with me on her shoulder to the front door.

I was little then

Here my She stood with a big smile on her face. I had a cuddle and a purr showed off my tail to She and her family and that was it. This was the day I became a boat cat.

It’s such a hard life

Back then the back of the sofa was a good place to sit, that was when we lived on Lillian. Then on Oleanna the sofa had a secret passage behind it which only got revealed every now and again. Now we live in Scarboreugh the sofa keeps moving but always has a route behind it, which I find handy for getting to sit in the window.

Toms boating coat

Life has changed somewhat in the last five years. They no longer move the outside and there are far FAR too many other cats who visit my outside, both front and back! In the last five months I have not murdered anything! Trees are hard to come by apart from in the park and She doesn’t take me there quite as much as she used to.

Out in the park

However, the tree that Tom chopped down has been brought inside. I can now go through my door (when they bother to open it for me!) and climb it to my hearts content, not having to share it with every other cat in the neighbourhood. It’s quite cool and I can stand at the top and sneer at Bogey Face and Fatty Betty who don’t have their own tree.

MY tree

You may think that I am now a house cat. I would disagree. I still get the same rules before I go out ‘You have an hour, no friends home dead or alive or putting them on the roof for later’. I still have to find a route that is accessible to the roof. I get ‘Thank you for coming home’ Dreamies. And quite frequently get told ‘Boat cats don’t claw furniture’ or ‘Boat cats don’t bite’. Lockdown in a house is boring so I have to find new ways to amuse myself.

The highlights of my day are at getting up time and bedtime. My birthday present from last year may have lost numerous feathers now, but it is still tops. She swings it round and I pounce from one end of the bed to the other. I stalk it and wait for it to come out from the Wardle room.

I do get to look out above the trees when She and I go to work. There is lots of this happening right now. I have been given a cushion to sit on so that I won’t try to squeeze into the model box anymore, She’s been busy making things to go inside it, they are poisonous! When we worked on Oleanna everything used to get tidied up every day and put away. Well She is now very very lazy and leaves everything out. Standards are slipping.

Tut Tut Tut!

Tom says that three years ago She wondered what I’d make of life in a house. Well there is a lot more room to run around after visiting my pooh box and good windows to sit and look out of. But the lack of friends is the serious down side along with there being too many cats. She says that one day, hopefully soon, we’ll be back on Oleanna and they’ll be moving the outside again. We just have to get to the other side of this lockdown and the breach. So my killing days may not be over.

Dreaming of Boats!

0 locks, 0 miles, 5 years second mate, 4 white paws, 1 white tipped tail, 5 months house bound, 1 lockdown and breach to pounce over, 3rd sofa, 1 tree of my very own, 2 cat walks, 3 cushions, 2 many cats, 0 friends, 2 lifes, 60 miles apart.

The Coal Van

Waiting for the coal van

Back in the olden days, when they used to move the outside, we used to get caught by a coal boat every now and again. Coal boats were good.

Here in modern times, with a static outside, we have a coal van. This coal van is far less efficient.

Coal boats pull up alongside. Coal vans pull up on the road outside.

Coal boat Toms put big bags of coal on your roof. Coal van Toms can’t reach the roof.

Coal house

Coal boat Toms leave your coal in bags, easy to move it around and it stays dry. Coal van Toms, after walking all the way round the houses, empty their bags into a little house. They then take the bags away again.

Tom then has to go and fill up the scuttle, chasing all those lumps of coal around with a short spade, instead of just pouring lumps out of a bag.

Coal boats also have new noses and charcoal for fires outside

The coal boat Tom stands and chats. The coal van Tom is too out of breath to chat.

The coal boat Tom also has a hose that fills us up with diesel. The coal van Tom doesn’t and is still out of breath.

NB Dusty

The coal boat Tom has big red bottles that Tom puts into our boats mouth. The coal van Tom doesn’t, his back aches and he has to move his van out of the way.

Look there’s Ruth She and Paddy Tom

We know coal boat’s names, coal boat Tom’s and She’s names, and their woofer’s names. I miss coal boats.

Walkies!

She has been accusing me of being lazy, becoming institutionalised!

Well its She and Tom are the ones who have become lazy. They have given up moving the outside and have left us in Scarboreough, so what do they expect me to do other than sleep if the outside stays the same ALWAYS!

Hello! I’m right here!!

She said, Enough is enough! I want my old cat back. Hello I’m right here in front of you, when I open my eyes that is.

So the other morning she put on her coat, hat, gloves, it’s rather cold for humans right now and called me to the front door. Time to go for a walk!

Off She walked up the hill, striding forth with purpose. This way Tilly! My little long legs did their best to keep up. But hang on! Things smell too interesting to just walk on by.

What’s that?

She wanted to go one way, me another. She gave in and followed me. There were sideways trees and big trees all requiring a good sniff and checking out. Exploring underneath the lush green sideways trees took time. I don’t know what She was doing but I could have done with a paw under there. No, all She did was stand on the path chatting to me. Until someone came with a woofer pooh bag for the bin, She went strangely quiet then and stood back well away from them.

Are you sure it’s better that way?

After a while She persuaded me that going the other way was way better, there would be fewer people. So I scooted to the next sideways tree, leaping across the little canal. Up the stairs she went. These aren’t like those inside, they are a bit muddy and don’t have carpet.

This way. This way!

Up and up She went. She was right it was better, we climbed up to as high as some of the trees, in amongst more trees. I checked them out making note as to which ones required to be climbed, there were quite a few I must say.

Stairs

Then we went sideways through more trees. This was brilliant! Just like our outside walks again when on the boat. I could hear woofers above us, but they couldn’t see me, so that was fine.

More stairs

However I was spotted. Spotted by crows! Blimey they are such noisy loud annoying birdies. They all swooped to be near me and shouted in my ears. No thank you I thought. I don’t care what you are saying, it’s deafening. So we quickly headed back down the hill, all those stairs. I was first to the front door, She had lagged behind so I shouted encouragement.

Plenty of trees

Apparently we’d walked half a mile. My tail really liked it.

So since then I haven’t been lazy or institutionalised, I have been proactive in asking to go for a walk every day. Tom isn’t quite so good, he isn’t quite so good at riding shot gun and keeping boss eyed Shoes away. Shoes did try to follow us the other day, but he soon wimped out as we climbed the stairs.

Another day there were lots of woofers. One with a hair clip so that it could see came right up to She and said in a really deep voice WOOF! It didn’t see me, but it was hard to miss as it was so BIG.

Me and She

Another day the little canal was frozen.

She won’t let me go right to the very top of the stairs. She says that there is a woofer playground up there and it wouldn’t be good for me. She says they’d most probably gang up against me, so we won’t be going that far.

Some people see us coming, I think some people hear She chatting to me and they change their route to avoid the nutty lady. This suits me as I can carry on sniffing and selecting trees for future visits.

It’s good here