To procure a new tenant with some certainty, my landlord asked that I vacate my luxury pad at the end of July. I complied. Homeless, I considered a stint as house sitter. An opportunity to gauge my readiness for change in the months ahead. Contemplating life without my familiar kitchen gadgets, cookbooks, choice condiments and sauces would, I thought, be wonderful practice for my approaching life of uncertainty.
So a well-connected and dear friend landed me my first job. I was introduced to a lovely couple with a lovely house where I now hang my hat. Then I met the cat. The cat didn’t take to me.
First night, exhausted and sleep deprived, I was ready to call it a day. My Plan: find cat, place in assigned room, climb into bed, sleep. The Cat’s Plan: not the same as mine. Anyone who has ever lived with a cat knows they have no intention of acquiescing to the demands of another. I guess I’d forgotten about this bit. In the world of cats, pointy teeth and claws carry weight, size does not. Check out any ‘Simon the Cat’ clips on You Tube.
Heading out to scour the dark pockets of the back yard, where I figured she joyfully lay-in-wait, I called and cajoled and tapped her brush against my thigh (having been assured this would have her sprinting back inside), all to no avail. The evening hours drew on when finally, glinting shards of glass caught in my flashlight. Feline eyes. Eureka. Sleep was temptingly close. I could feel the cool sheets calling my name. I reached out an open but desperate hand. “Here kitty,” I cooed. But like a scene from a Stephen King movie she let me have it! I had visions of bloody pools settling where I had once stood. The neighbours ogling at the grizzly scene as daylight revealed the destruction from the previous night’s crazed cat attack.
The horror over, prickly and shaken we parted ways, she dashing ever deeper into the night, me retreating to lick my wounds, admitting a sure defeat.
Having relinquished ‘control’, I collapsed on the sofa, teary-eyed, wondering if this house sitting thing was for me. How long had I signed up to do this?
We’re friends now. I feed her. She ignores me. It’s great. That and I close the doors long before the evening damp might tempt her for a repeat performance.
So as I leave this place, my ‘home’ of two weeks, I think I might even miss her.