Thursday, July 11, 2013

Beware of Cats Bearing Gifts

I don't know why this is the thing which brings me to The Writing Vein tonight. I haven't posted here since returning home, despite other intentions. I have done some writing, mostly editing, but I haven't come here.

I meant to.

I did post a very brief travelogue with two or three pictures from each day on my Facebook timeline. Very brief. But an acknowledgment.

And I did what the partially self-employed do, the part-time employed without vacation time (or other benefits): I squeezed out as much time off as I felt I could afford and squeezed in the work time I could around that. Which resulted in ten consecutive days off of work = bliss. And a fruitful and replenishing ten-day road trip. And a return to a string of long work days to minimize missed time.

It was worth it. Every hour.

It also meant I was going from work to sleep to getting ready to work, rinse, repeat. That's okay.

But I didn't come here.

So now here I am.

With creativity flowing and laundry to do and ideas percolating and walking and working and my computer acting up. In other words, life. And words.


Earlier this evening we were settled in to watch a movie and we heard our cat. I thought he was at the front door wanting to come in. He does that sometimes.

My partner said something like, "but that doesn't sound like him." But it was him, I knew. But it wasn't quite his normal "meow letmeinnow" sound, I agreed.

So she went to the front door and opened it. We have a set of bells on the door and when it is opened or closed they jingle, of course. We had the bells long before we had the cat, but still it's a sound he's come to know and he knows it means the door is open.

She opened the door but he was nowhere to be seen.

I heard him again. She heard him. And as she was shutting the door I saw him coming down the stairs and heard his paws on the wooden steps. Then my partner reacted and went to the other room and said something like, "He's got something. Your turn!"

The cat prounced happily into the living room where I was. Nothing was in his mouth. But when I went to the stairs I saw it.

Not a mouse - he's done that a few times; once it was a squirrel. But this was a little brown furry body - maybe a mole? Or something like that. And it was my turn to dispose of it. Which I did, after putting the cat outside so he wouldn't grab hold of it while I was getting something to scoop it up with. Poor rodent.

I didn't get mad at the cat. It's what cats do and he was proud of his catch and was only bringing us a present.

For now his little cat entry into the house is blocked. He's going to have to be let in for a little while. I don't want to wake up in the night to a little furry present in the bed or under my feet in the bathroom.


This incident made me wonder about things which are familiar but don't turn out to be what we think. Like the cat's meow to be let in actually being an announcement of his prize.


Next time I think I'll remember that particular meow.

I wonder what other subtle differences I should pay attention to in other areas of my life?

I wonder how I would write that in a story. The difference in his timbre and resonance. How to use that to build tension and story.