Pull up a chair and call the cat a bastard!*
A few years ago, I wrote this short blog post about porch paranoia.
This morning, it finally sort-of happened.
We have this cat. Well, we don’t have this cat, it’s more like this cat has us – but only when he feels like it. He starting appearing a few months ago, cheekily walking through the open back door, or hopping in through the kitchen window. He’d hang around for a bit, get purry, then disappear. A few days later he’d be back. This became so regular that in the end we dug out one of Oscar’s old bowls, bought some cat-biscuits, and treated him to a few whenever he showed his furry face. That was probably a bit naughty of us, but we decided that the situation came under Pratchett’s Sixth Rule of Cat Aquisition, that being Joint Ownership:
‘Do you know where your cat spends its time when it’s not at home? It’s worth checking with more distant neighbours that they don’t have a cat with the same size and colouring. It can happen. We once knew two households who for years both thought they owned the same cat, which spent its time commuting between food bowls. A sort of menagerie à trois.’ (The Unadulterated Cat, by Sir Terry Pratchett)
Where was I? Ah yes. The cat. He’s now become a daily visitor, has mastered the cat-flap, and even has the occasional sleep-over. And we still have absolutely no idea where he really lives. Sorry – I mean where his other house is.
Anyway. I got up this morning and auto-piloted the kettle on for coffee, then thought I heard a tiny squeak. I put the kettle off and listened.
A few seconds later there was definitely a tiny, faint, high-pitched meow.
And I knew.
Dashing to the front door as quickly as I could on my morning-legs, I opened it, and there on the doormat in our tiny-about-one-and-a-half-metre-square porch sat The Cat.
He must have snuck in unseen when we locked up last night.
But don’t panic – he was absolutely fine. He got up, stretched, ambled into the lounge and did his flop-onto-one-side-then-wave-his-legs-about-whilst-purring-noisily thing which means ‘Tickle my tummy!’
So I did.
I suppose I should really go and check to see if he’s pooed in any shoes…
*quote attributed to Nanny Ogg