A Meditation on the Beauty of My Cat

I may have said (!!) that I have four cats who I love dearly and have mentioned in previous posts. My tabby cat, or to give her her full name, Princess Charlotte Oddpaw, was sitting on my chest the other evening, sharing a meditation with me and the thought popped into my head: “You will write more about me… you will write more about me…”

I hesitate to call her a ‘cat’ actually as I am convinced she regards herself as a small, furry, superior human getting to grips with the complications of everyday life. She is scarily intelligent. Her calculated ambush attacks and pretend sweetness has reduced my son to tears (when he was younger, I must add, to spare his manly blushes) as he stumbled away, half-blinded by blood, drawn in by her deceptive purring and exposure of creamy chest fur, just begging for a tickle… To be fair, she has mellowed with age and my son has learned to treat her with the respect a cat of her standing deserves.

CharlieA little light bedtime reading…

She masquerades as a common or garden tabby. Not so: amazing colours are contained within her soft, elegant fur, ranging from the milk chocolate banding on her delicate legs, the silvery grey flashes of cheek fur to the abstract blotches of orange carnelian, strategically placed along her spine. Her tiny paws are carefully decorated in black, grey and mouse coloured hairs, alternating in a pleasing arrangement, apart from the quirky addition of three ginger toes. (Did God run out of pain for that part, or miscalculate the mix?) She has a small, finely shaped head, surmounted by two sail-like ears that bracket the beauty of her eyes. Her pink nose is dainty, adorned either side with splendid whiskers that she can push forward in annoyance or smooth back in pleasure as she achieves her goals…

Her eyes are beacons of hope, mischief or beauty according to her mood. Usually they are the palest emerald green, threaded through with iridescent gold, framed by lines of cream and brown fur that would befit any Egyptian queen’s attempt at eye makeup. Her eyes can narrow in rage as she chatters at impertinent pigeons, widen in innocence “Who me? I never that tore that chunk of wallpaper off from behind the sofa!” or half-close, dreamily, as she basks in her own ineffable cattishness.

CHUDDY BUDDYPrincess Charlotte surveying her subjects…

She definitely has a sense of humour. I have nursed many a scratched ankle, after making the bed, unawares that a tabby tigress lurked underneath, anticipating the perfect moment to lash out with miniature scimitar paws and engender a scream of pain and fright. You’d think I would have learned by now, but forgetting is part of the fun… possibly! One of my other cats, although a cheerful soul, is not the brightest individual and is often the unwitting victim of ambush attacks and set-ups. “Oh no, muddy paw prints on the worktop!” My princess smiles serenely, little dirty feet tucked cunningly beneath her as she practically gestures towards her stooge, engaged in removing a random lump of mud from between her toes.

My four cats co-exist amicably enough, and I have photographic evidence that shows all four sleeping together on my bed, although I do think that the others waited for Charlie to fall asleep before they dared to climb aboard the bed to settle, one at each corner. (Night times aren’t much fun, I’m a restless sleeper at the best of times and am often awakened by thundering paws across my chest as the cat population of my bed changes.)

However, having had cats since I was little, my first being a large, black parlour panther called Snoopy, I would undoubtedly miss their presence. They enrich my life and remain a constant source of amusement, much like my children… 

All photos were taken by my son!

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