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Friday, 4 November 2011
Here is Elsie curled up in her basket beside me as I type .. we celebrate her birthday on Halloween, because she came to us at about 6 months old (acc. to the vet) so we counted backwards and she must have been born sometime in October so we picked Halloween for her special day, being a black cat. She came to me at a turning point in my life and was my constant companion in difficult times. She was a proper alley cat, we watched her out in the snow with her mum crawling from beneath one car to another in the car park outside our Tottenham flat, as a warmer bonnet presented itself. Then we didn't see her mum anymore but she was around, always covered in an oily slick from the underside of the cars. I put cat food out for her .. people who knew about cats said it would take weeks if not months for her to approach, but the second day she ate while I sat and watched and then followed me indoors. Wasn't sure about anyone else at first, so the first night I slept in the lounge where she had set up camp rather nervously in the corner. As I dosed off to sleep on the sofa to my surprise she jumped up on top of me and curled up on my tummy. And there she stayed... that was seven years ago. She's not a sociable sort of cat. She doesn't suffer fools gladly. She is definitely her own cat. People are generally disappointed. But I like her style.
On the subject of black cats, we have a Hallowe'en story to tell.... when the little'un woke from his afternoon nap it was just starting to get dark, so we sat at the kitchen table with our milk and bic-sits and I lit the candle in our pumpkin lantern for him to see. As I turned to draw the blinds I saw a black cat outside the kitchen window .. as it saw me it jumped right up onto the windowsill. Straight away the little'un said 'Hello Elsie', but she was fast asleep upstairs. This was another black cat who technically lives a few doors down from us but is something of a wanderer .. we hadn't seen him since June. I daren't let him in (Elsie would never forgive me) but I took him out a bowl of milk. I can't remember the old sayings about black cats and which direction they have to cross your path in, but I'm taking his visit to us on halloween as a sign of good luck for the coming dark days ahead of us.
Many thanks to Zen Kitty for inspiring this black cat post.