Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Feline pedagogics

The kittens have figured out quite a few things over the past few weeks: How to run, how to make stupid humans come running with loud squeals, how to climb up stupid human legs, how to hang on to poor mummy's teat using nifty new teeth.

Yesterday they figured out how to poop. See, I didn't know this before, but the first four weeks or so, kittens just don't. Mummy cat takes care of it for them, while washing them. (Yuck, poor Pims!) But then, one day, they just sort of...arrive.

We got out a special litter box for them, with low edges so it wouldn't be hard to get into. We filled it with sand and put the little rascals in the box whenever they woke up after napping and whenever they had eaten. We even held their little paws and made them dig a little in the sand to help them get the idea. But no. All the poop and all the pee wound up on the floor and got stepped in and run through and dragged all over.

Pims watched all this gravely. More than once she gave us the stupid, stupid humans look that she is so very good at. But she didn't try to stop them or lift them into the box or anything you might expect.

We went to bed (which was in the same room because we had overnight guests and couldn't put them up in a room full of poo) feeling a tad desperate, wondering if our future would mostly be dominated by squished kitty poo. But just as I was about to fall asleep, I saw Pims come into the room carrying something in her mouth. It was a bedraggled, old toy mouse that she has found somewhere under the sofa, I expect. She chewed it intently for a little while, then spit it out into the litter box. Boy, is that cat weird, I thought, and then finally drifted off to dream of clean floors.

This morning, the ragged mouse was still in the box. Next to it was a little pile of kitty poo. I stared at the mouse and the pile, shook my head and went to get breakfast. When I came back, the mouse had been moved to the opposite corner of the box. And next to it was a new pile of poo. On the floor: nothing. And as of this evening: still nothing.

How, how, how did they think of that? How could they know what the mouse meant? Very Lynchesque.


(And since I didn't really want to post a photo of the poo, here's one of Lin and Teodor instead. I'm sure they're both dreaming of clean floors.)

Monday, January 19, 2009

Waffles, anyone?

This is Claus, Yulevale's very own, very friendly, very artistic waffle house owner. He's asking you to come inside for a waffle or two or three, they cost nothing, you know. Would you like lemons and sugar on top? Or chocolate sauce and toasted hazelnuts, or real golden syrup from the mountain caravans, or fresh circulamatic strawberries and whipped cream? Just name your fancy! Nothing is too difficult for a true artiste de waffle!

(And a big soft hamster hug on the side is not entirely out of the question, either, we're all friends here!)

Drawing by wonderful Kris.


Ha! I bet I scared you with my wall eyes! Pity they're only like that for photos, or I'd be the coolest mean cat in the neighbourhood.

Then nobody would notice that I squeal and meow so loudly that my mother is beside herself with worry, even when nothing much is going on, and that I will only purr for that huge human female that feeds me cat milk with a syringe.

What, no, I'm no wimp! I'm scary! Just wait until I can walk without falling over every third step, then I'll really kick your bottom! Boo! Boo!

Love, Teodor

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Slightly lost

Gwen and I both these days.

I picked names from my story for the kittens, and they are mostly very wrong. Little Gwen is all soft and timid and quiet. Isvan is brawny and boisterous and a people person. Teodor squeals like a mouse and tends to lose his way. Balthasar is a healthy little guy. Ha.

I feel like that, too. Like someone installed someone else in my brain over Christmas. Book? What book? And what energy? And what routines? Just can't remember.

Well. There's always next week.

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Will that be snot or kittens?

I bet you're sick of kitten pictures by now. Well, it's all I've got. I've hardly been out of the sofa for a week because of a spectacular, noseboggling cold. There's nothing quite like a giant snot fest to start the new year! Makes you give up on the resolutions much quicker. Better for everyone, I'm sure.

At least the kittens are doing well. They've all opened their eyes now (more or less), and some of them are starting to show some personality. (And I don't mean that in the America's Next Top Model way, where apparently, If you're not very loud, you have no personality. Ha. They should visit Norway.)

Isvan, still all white and pink (and the star of the photo above), is a bit of a wimp and squeals all the time. But he's very cute. Niklas is calmer and actually looks at me with those funny, alien eyes of his. Mirja is a fighter and refuses to be pushed away from the teat, even if the others are much bigger than her (and even if Isvan is flailing all around her. Squealing.). The others are more difficult to tell apart so far, but I'm guessing it won't be soon before we recognize their faces well enough.

The photos are by my Pan, and are alittle dark because bright light bothers the little ones. But you can sort of see how cute they are.

Well, there you go! Another full helping of kittens.

Thursday, January 1, 2009

Hello 2009, and more kitten/cat bliss

A little heavy on the cat stuff these days, but it can't be helped. They're just so cute, especially Pims, who veers from happy to tired to happy and tired and has almost no time to waste on us stupid humans.

All the babies are doing fine, one has opened his eyes, one has developed a whiskey squeak, one is still the littlest, but is growing stronger every day. The first signs of markings have started to appear, and there is one that is still all white, little Isvan. I can't wait to get to know them, and to find out which one is our new family member.

Here's a pic of my Pan helping Pims with the feeding, in the middle of the night while still in his New Year's attire. How's that for a modern man!

And then over to the real reason for this post: Happy new year, everybody!

I have a good feeling about 2009. I think it will be like that rare, wonderful fantasy novel that justifies all the muck you've been reading lately. If we're lucky, it'll feature a new hero or heroine, some mended wounds, a monumental task finally finished, and adventures, always more adventures.

But let's start with seven cats in a small apartment. Not the worst of beginnings.