This week has been a week of new arrivals.
As we kicked our way down the hill for the first week of kindergarten, the children noticed with glee that the chestnuts have started to drop from the trees. The start of prickles-in-little-fingers season, then. The chestnuts are too small as yet to bother with, but soon we'll be collecting bags of them, roasting chestnuts on the fire and making chestnut-flour cakes.
Another new arrival was the entire Booker shortlist in hardback, which was slammed down on the stone bench outside the front door by our postina, who could have left them with our neighbour downstairs, but didn't because she's like that. Their arrival makes Mama very happy, because now she has the promise of Verifiably Good Literature to keep her going through many happy autumn and winter evenings in front of the woodburner, a glass of Monsieur Lafarge's best by my side.
With the cold weather, the cats from the outlying regions - the outlaw cats as I always think of them - have been popping by to see if their currency is still valid up at the big house. And a new tabby, all pointed ears and hungry eyes, has been running the gauntlet of the residents every day now to grab something to eat and, once, to curl up on the sofa while no-one was looking.
And at last, Carmine's tabby matriarch finally brought this year's offspring to meet me. She lost the first litter of the year, which she had nested in our next-door-neighbour's bedroom, but was immediately pregnant again. She dropped the second litter a couple of months ago, and there were wild rumours of the existence of kittens hidden away in one of the more inaccessible gardens, but also of the intermittent presence of two hungry-looking foxes. I wasn't hopeful. So I was very happy to see the proud Mama jump up onto the terrace the other day, to hear a little mew behind her, "You mean it's up there?", and then to see a fluffy white head and two white paws appear over the edge.
So the orientation tour began :
"Okay, now listen carefully, here's where they put the normal cat food. It's fortified with calcium and vitamins and it's good for you, so get used to it..."
"...If you nose your way into the kitchen, there, by that big, warm, silver thing - especially when the tall guy's cooking, you might be able to wangle yourself some offcuts of fish or meat. Just tilt your head to one side, flash those big blue eyes and look cute..."
"Oh yeees, did I forget to tell you? This is your brother. The big people call him Trouble, because he is. If you have any further questions, just ask him!"
Now where has he got that gorgeous colouring from when most of the rest are tabbies?
Its father is, I'm guessing, a big white male from the same litter of AJ's girl cat, who is white and tabby. This is where it gets complicated - the big white male is also a child of the Mama cat who is herself descended from a white persian.
What a lovely story!!! I want to meet the cute little one!!!
tooo adorable... and very sweet photos
You're like the Mother Teresa of felines!
"...the children noticed with glee that the chestnuts have started to drop from the trees."
It's that time of year. I'm excited just like the kids, to be honest :-)
@LadyFi : Mother Teresa no. The Fool on the Hill, perhaps. Or, given that last spring we spent more money on vets bills (even though we don't consider ourselves cat owners) than we did on Christmas presents for the children, so perhaps Mother Christmas...?
I love the Fool on the Hill comment :)) It's like that with cats, isn't it? Our Bali boy treats us that way :)
Happy reading, Louise, and give my regards to the Monsieur.... :))
@Braja : The Fool on the Hill it is, then!
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