Clarence having Lunch
I’ve been feeding a stray cat (I call him Clarence since “Kitty-cat” doesn’t fit him at all) from one of the front windows. I slide up the screen and dump a little cat food into a bowl on a table on the front porch just outside the window.
He didn’t come around for about a week and when I saw him again, he resembled a mantis. I’ve been watching for him lately and putting fresh food in the bowl as soon as I see him and he’s been putting weight back on. Yesterday, Bob made this heavenly broiled salmon for dinner and we had a bit left over. Our cat, Salem, won’t eat fish so, early this morning, when I saw Clarence coming across the yard, I put out a small dish next to the cat food with the salmon in it.
An hour or two later, Bob made a surprised noise when he woke up and almost stepped on a dead mouse on the living room carpet. I went to check the window, and saw I’d left the screen up. And there was Clarence, sitting in the grass across the road looking at us through the open window with that satisfied cat expression.
“Is anyone watching?”
I wish I’d had my camera that does movie clips. Leo was rolling around like he’d found a patch of catnip.
Were cats put on Earth to remind us not to worry so much about the clothes or the dignity and just enjoy rolling around in the clover?
Our cat, Salem, is very territorial. Accompanied by Bella, her bodyguard and muscle, Salem patrols her territory each day, allowing entry only to prey (i.e. bunnies and birds).
Salem on Patrol
Bella: The Queen’s Bodyguard and Muscle
But for the past year or so, there’s been one exception. A stray black cat has been allowed into the yard. When we put cat food and water out for him, she allowed him to come up on the porch to eat and drink without a hint of hostility. He spent the winter in the rafters of our garden shed, coming out to have a bowl of cat food on the porch, but finally, this spring, Salem allowed him to come into the house. At this point, he had to have some sort of name other than “that stray black cat.” I thought he looked rather like Albert Einstein with his long fur sticking out in all directions, but “Albert” was outvoted and “Leo” won. It was close: 2 to 1. I haven’t been able to get a decent picture of Leo yet; like all black cats, his fur seems to either suck up light like a black hole or reflect it back like he’s wearing a clear vinyl raincoat.