10 May 2012

Stupid Cat!

That cat - again! 

I don’t know his name, or what house he comes from, and our relationship isn’t even at the level of intimacy where I can give a definitive answer to which sex he is, but is bound to be a ‘he’, given the trouble he is causing.

He’s eaten my tadpoles and the meal worm meant for the poor birds, frightened my fish, crapped on my lawn and now uses the newly bare earth for similar nefarious purposes, and his very presence in the garden stops me putting out food for the birds.  

Having said this, he is very friendly, unusually so. Practically every time you go into the garden he pipes us with a high pitched meow and keeps ‘talking’ as long as you are there.  This makes his disapproval of my presence during the dawn chorus even more comical.

Can’t say it’s a ‘love / hate’ relationship, more a ‘exasperation / exasperation’ relationship.

So the other evening when he climbed to the very tips of an outreaching branch of a tree that bends right over a pond there were mixed emotions. 

Starlings have built a nest under the eaves of the next door neighbour’s house. It’s a focused area of activity, with the adults coming and going and the sound of the chicks audible. Even though the cat is still a kitten itself – this is the first spring outside he has experienced – his primitive hunting instinct must have reacted to the commotion and urged him to climb the tree to get as near as possible.  Yet the nest is metres away.  The only way a cat could get to it would be if he was some version of a comic book superhero – Supercat or Spidercat.

Of course this killer instinct was worrying to see in action, but the skill with which the cat climbed the tree was impressive.  I didn’t know he could. And I don’t think he did either until he attempted it.

Which is all well and good but what would have happened if he wasn’t as sure-footed as he supposed? The pond was directly underneath him.  It was amazing to see nature red in tooth and claw in action, but I couldn’t help having visions of knocking on people’s houses with a wet or drowned cat in my arms, asking “Is this yours? Sorry but he fell in the pond.  By the way he uses my garden as a toilet!”

In the end he didn’t, he just turned and gave this adolescent glare, “Stop fussing!”