Thursday, 9 November 2017


The younger members of the household – the ones who, naturally, run it – seem to be pleased with the transformation of the place. And pleased, above all, to be back in it. It didn’t take them long to pick up their old habits where they’d left off.

Misty, the feline element, never physically left. As we didn’t want to take him to a flat without a cat flap he stayed behind. That made him the household member who suffered the most: he was stuck at a house full during the day of strange, noisy people engaged in various aspects of building work, which always starts with a fearful destruction, leaving it full of dust, mess and strange smells at all times.

So it was good to see him, once the work was done, quickly learning the use of the new pet flap and making himself at home and at ease even before we’d moved back. That meant coping with a place without so much as a carpet let alone a couch, but he seemed to have no difficulty with any of that. 
I also have to say that, while he would never admit it, he seems delighted by the return of the rest of the family.

It started with the dogs. Within minutes, Misty was dealing with the constant and not always welcome affection of Toffee. Since that affection is often tinged with slightly aggressive jealousy, I can understand that he found it advisable to take refuge behind a ladder and, when Toffee persisted, to use one of his fine sets of claws to express his sense that it was time for her to stop.

Misty's patience running out
There was, for a time, a little tension between those two. Once Toffee had also mastered the pet flap, she quickly realised she could position herself to keep Misty out of the house. I mean, she may just have been looking at him, but that pitiful “hey, let me in” look on his face suggested that Misty, like me, thought otherwise.

Important note added since the initial posting: Im indebted to Deb, an ally Misty would be delighted to have if he knew about her, points out that Misty isn’t looking pitiful at all. “Looks to me,” she argues, “like hes rolling his eyes and thinking yeah, there are good things about them all being back but this I could do without...” Examining the picture more closely, I have to say she may well be right.

Toffee watching Misty –or keeping him out?
With his domestic staff, Misty’s got straight back into usual routine. At breakfast time on the second day, I thoughtlessly left the table to get myself another coffee, and hadn’t even reached the kitchen before he’d jumped up and taken my place. He likes our dining chairs, but prefers them warmed up for him before he sits on one. He also knows that while Danielle will just tip him off, I haven’t the heart to do that. Or more to the point, I have too vivid a memory of scratches and bites with which my temerity has been rewarded in the past.

Curiously, Danielle never receives that treatment.

Anyway, I was pleased to see how comfortable Misty was in what I’d fondly come to think of as my seat. Although it made the end of breakfast rather less comfortable for me.

Kindly warmed for him, what I thought was my seat suits Misty perfectly
The dogs readapted quickly. The couch, their favourite place when not out on walks, had stayed with us during our exile, and it returned with us. That made the whole experience easier for them: they’d enjoyed living in a home-from-home for a while and now could relax completely in their home-at-home.

There have, however, been changes. There’s an extra floor now, and another set of stairs they have to climb when they want to jump on the bed with us for the night. The bed itself is higher, as well, so the leap is bigger. That sometimes bothers Toffee, so she occasionally prefers just to whimper till one of us lifts her up – even though she knows as well as we do that she can get up herself, since she’s done it many times.

Luci, at any rate, seems perfectly happy with it. Completely at ease.
Luci satisfied with the new accomodation
All in all, I’d have to say it was a successful homecoming.

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