Thursday, May 26, 2016


Cloud is 13 years old now. Has survived her sister, Priss, whose downfall was being too friendly and most likely not paying constant close attention in her world here on the hill. 

We call Cloud "kitty" now from years of getting to know her and appreciating her. Not a day goes by where the wife or I do not ask each other if we have seen "kitty" this morning? Instead of being hunkered down in her kitty house with electric matt over these past winter months, she is now conflicted at night when the garage door goes down. The warm weather and warm nights win out now as she opts to stay outside. We call her, she turns to look at us just like in the photo above, but then heads out into the woods, or darts into the carport or woodshed. She has her hiding places, I know. 

I wanted to do a quick blog on her for no other reason than to share her. The fresh dead mouse this morning in the front yard also inspired this blog. 

I called her this morning for her photo opp. "Come here kitty", a little coaxing and trying to fool her into a stationary position so I can take my time with the camera and get the shot. But she wants nothing to do with her photo opp and she knows immediately that something is different as I aim the camera at her. 

First under and behind the car, then with her back to me, she travels across the driveway near the edge of the woods. I approach, a better shot of her in the woods, I think. But she becomes lost in the underbrush and new growth. I walk around calling "here kitty." She emerges near the edge of the lawn and for brief moment turns towards me when I call her. Click click and that was my only shot. Chasing her any further was not something I wanted to do, no matter how great a picture might result. This cat has many lives and is (always has been) elusive. A quick touch on the back of her head when she is hungry and waiting near her dish is all she has ever allowed. And in those perfect moments she shares some purring that she is a happy cat and appreciates us. But no more than that brief acknowledgement from time to time. Never!!

We have fischer cats that roam this property on a regular basis. Lots of wild animals come and go here. A fischer cat crying at night sounds like an old lady being tortured just outside our bedroom window. The torture will go on for a long time. The night cry of a fischer cat brings the bride and me sitting straight up from a dead sleep. That "kitty" has survived this long is a testament to her knowing her outside environment and this property. If I knew what the cat knows around this house, I would be light years ahead of where I actually am. 

Two summers ago, I watched a fischer cat walk the perimeter of our property just behind kitty's photo opp picture above. The cat saw me, made eye contact and did not run. The cat was not aggressive nor was it afraid that I knew it was there. I waved my hands, told it to get going, shouted man shouts and the cat gave me a no never mind. We were leaving to go to town shopping that morning and kitty was outside somewhere. So, I manned up and shouted louder and waved my hands like a man's man to get that cat to move on. I was pathetic!!

Eventually the cat moved back into the woods and on the trail to the neighbors house. "Kitty" came from out of the woods on the other side of the yard when we came back from shopping and started to rub up against the car port support post. A sign of some contentment that we were back home. I told her, as I always do, that she ought not be outside and hanging around when fischer cats are visiting.

From time to time, the dog and I walk the driveway towards the highway. The dog is just happy to be out on a walk and darts from side to side of the driveway. "Kitty", although distant and aloof, gives herself away that she too wants to be a part of these outings. She, however, walks the rock walls, rises and falls of the driveway edges and perches herself on a large bolder to watch us go by. She then darts into the woods, only to reappear further down the driveway watching us approach. The same practice when we head  back up to the house. Her only real friend and trusty companion is our Golden Retriever. It appears that the dog is her hero. She walks along side so close that both animals are touching each other. The dog does not care about the cat, at least from outward appearances. But the dog never has discounted nor challenged "kitty" in her world here.

"Kitty" has perfected situational awareness.  She is always "on." She never ever relaxes or lets her guard down. Her head darts around like she is afflicted, her tail twitches and she seeks cover in all of her movements. No cat head down and lost in cat texting. From time to time, she will run into the garage with her tail twitching and head looking back over her shoulder. She has run into the garage as a measure of her security. And she stays in the garage. I look outside, see nothing and all is well. But not in her cat world!!