Wednesday, December 24, 2014

Merry Christmas and a prosperous and safe New Year

Spider and I are taking leave - not that it was a busy bloggage year for us. Christmas time is upon us so we're going to put in our Japanese garden over the next few weeks.

Miss Mouse
For those of you thinking about presents for someone who already has plenty of clutter in their lives (ie most of us), we suggest making a donation to one of the many animal rescue organisations that are out there trying to rehome dogs, cats and everything else, and are always overwhelmed at Christmas. There the SPCA, and this 4 Legs Good has links to a couple of rescue organisations for you cat people (if this doesn't make you want to race out and adopt a kitten, check you still have a pulse). In Auckland Passion for Paws is run on an absolute shoestring and is always grateful for donations towards their vet bills. And if you're in the South Island and would like to keep it closer to home Christchurch Bull Breed rescue are hoping for a vet bill-free Chrsitmas, too. 

And if you're thinking of getting a pet for Christmas, please adopt. The SPCA, the Council's animal shelters and the rescues all have dogs and cats that would make someone the perfect pet. If you're thinking of a dog, Miss Mouse is looking for her forever home. We met Miss Mouse last week and she is beautiful, and is the happiest wee girl you'll meet.

We'll be back in 2015 although maybe in a different form or perhaps with a slightly different focus. Things change and while writing the blog has been valuable for me for reasons I won't bore you with, it might be time to have a rethink. We'll see. And since 2015 is only a week and a bit away we'll know soon enough (even I don't know yet).
A very merry Christmas to all, and all the best for 2015 from our little clan.

Friday, December 19, 2014

Winkle: called home by the Lizard People

Winkle came to us as a kitten - really just a pair of eyes on legs. Unusually, he came out of the box he had been transported in, sat on the dining room table, looked around and said "yep, this'll do me." He didn't have to be kept inside for days because he'd obviously decided he didn't want to go anywhere else.

In a fit of madness, I decided he could be trained to sleep in the study rather than on the bed. The first night he banged on the door but eventually stopped. The second night he didn't stop and after some time I gave up and opened the door. He came flying out of the study, sprinted into the bedroom and winkled around the bedhead to make sure that was where he stayed. It was also how he came to get his name. Cat training fail.

It soon became clear Winkle was not a normal cat. He chatted, would try to follow me up to the bus top in the morning, and kept flopping over for tummy rubs. He was also bad at cat stuff: he wasn't interested in hunting, and if he did catch something he would bring it inside while howling proudly, then let it go because he didn't know what to do next. He was much more adept at stalking and dismembering loaves of bread, or pushing the compost bowl off the bench and onto the floor so as to get at desirable scraps.

Where's the milk?
Eventually we realised that he was a fake cat and was most likely a spy from the Lizard Planet. While the Lizard People had got their cat blueprint mostly right, there were definitely some things that had misfired. 

Mostly what misfired was that Winkle liked hanging out in the sun and eating and sleeping and demanding milk and eating...oh wait, I already said that. He used to sit on the windowsill in the morning, and we imagined he was beaming back bogus reports about how he was preparing earth for a ground invasion, but then went and slept in the front yard till dinnertime.

This week it became evident that one thing that had misfired was his upper respiratory tract. He stopped eating and had trouble breathing. He didn't respond to treatment, even after being on a drip at the vet. This morning we made the very painful decision to put him down and buried him in his favourite spot in the front yard. It was time for Winkle to go home to the Lizard People.

Rest in peace my beautiful, mad, mad, beautiful boy. You will be missed more than you could ever have known.