Cats, books & bonding with friends


For a couple of weeks, I was the honored housesitter for my friends while they traveled in Europe. I moved into their home and rarely left until they returned from their trip this past Friday. Mostly it was my job to serve their two cats, Lucy and Olivia.

Dena is a writer who has published an absolutely hysterical book called Lessons In Stalking. This morning I happened to notice my copy of the book lying nearby. I picked it up, flipped it open to a random page. "YESSSSS! I know that cat!" And I realized I'm missing my new, recent friends!

Everything's different. Now that I've lived in her home for two weeks and interacted with her little cherubs, I will understand her book, and the stories in her blog from an entirely different perspective. I will recognize those facial expressions and recall the sound of that hiss, the sight of one or the other of them scurrying away after I've moved too quickly for anyone's comfort.

Those cats are tricky. There was a lot of hissing from Lucy, and for days on end, Olivia was completely invisible. Which led me down torturous mind-journeys that ended in my having to tell my friend her kitty was lost on my watch. Of course it never happened, and in the end my exceedingly high comfort level with cats and love of all felines helped me to make some friendly connections. Lucy and I played "chase the food down the hall" which she came to initiate with me - usually when I was preparing my own dinner. And Olivia and I had morning and evening lap time when I was sitting at the computer where she usually has morning lap time with Daddy while he's checking email.

I am told this was a very big deal. Apparently other friends don't necessarily think Olivia exists. And why would they, really?

Meanwhile I'm contemplating my own tome: "Lessons in Stalking II: So you want to hang in our house while Mommy and Daddy are away..." Hmmm. Has a nice ring to it, no?