I had planned to start writing about The Witch of Edmonton today, as I read it on Saturday evening with a large glass or few of Fitou in a break from Midnight’s Children (a book which was pretending to be an unexceptionable size but actually is quite long). However, today, for the first time since October, the sun shone on Belgium! And it didn’t rain! So instead I’ve been able to pot up the jasmine I bought on Saturday, aided by a trusty kitten:
The jasmine was lucky to survive: shortly after I took this photograph Mister Puss suddenly decided that mauling pot plants looked fun and the two cats really got going together. In recent months, Mister Puss has relaxed his Grumpy Old Cat mien. He doesn’t slap Clara about and swear as much; instead, they have bouts of playing, they can even sleep on the same bed together sometimes.
But Clara has The Paw. And The Paw can’t resist creeping out and patting Mister Puss’s tail – or even bottom! – this apparently is an Assault on his Dignity. She loves it best when Mister Puss is stretched out before the gas fire in the evening. Silently, she leaps onto the coffee table and leans over him. Slowly, The Paw stretches out, slowly closer, closer, and then – dab! And Mister Puss leaps up shrieking and they slap at each other for a few seconds before subsiding into Meaningful Stares.
Here is The Paw in action outside our back door this very afternoon!
And a look of Long Suffering:
I’ve also taken some chicken photographs for you. As you may remember, if my life is foremost in your mind at all times, Fluffy and Night-Fluffy were hatched in August by their foster mother Daisy. They grew fast, but whether they were boys or girls was unclear. Then – well, here is Night Fluffy just before my daughter and I went to England for a week at Christmas:
He’s also started developing spurs (scary!), attempting to crow in the mornings (he’s now quite good at this) and doing ungentlemanly things to the ladies. Definitely not a hen. The threat of the pot has been withdrawn, as long as he doesn’t become very violent and aggressive. So far, Daisy and Flower, the older hens, have been keeping him firmly under their claws despite his amorous ways. Here is Daisy with Fluffy and Night Fluffy (Flower was busy laying an egg):
More soon! Happy Monday!
* Edited to add: I meant to write this originally, but forgot! I have perhaps exaggerated the speed of Night Fluffy’s transformation; the first photograph was actually taken at the end of November, the second on the day of posting. But he did seem to change radically in that one week. Really!