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Toby's Diary

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Josie does her thing

December 1st 2014 10:50 pm
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I came in at the weekend to find mum busy making cards for Christmas.

"What do ours look like this year?" I asked.

"We don't know," responded Josie, somewhat tartly, "Ours aren't made yet. She's doing her own first."

"I hope you've been helping," I asked with a wink.

"Oh yes," said Josie.

And she had. She started with a full-on tug of war with some jewellery wire, then took to knocking piles of felt off the table and then ninja raids, the sudden pounce out of nowhere and theft of items currently being used. This leads to a chase as my mum (probably rightly) doesn't trust Josie not to swallow stuff.

"I think she's learned her lesson," said Josie smugly. "It will be ours first next year."

"The reason I haven't made yours is because I haven't been able to get a decent photo," complained my mum. "All I want is one of the two of you together. Is that too much to ask?"


We had no internet yesterday morning. On those mornings I am torn between annoyance at not being able to get my Catster updates and happy because I get more of my mum's attention.


What is it?

November 27th 2014 10:35 pm
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Mum had a dangly thing with her yesterday - sort of string with things hanging off. When she has a thing in the one hand and her camera in the other it's never going to be good news. I made myself scarce.

Josie had no such qualms.

"Oooh - Dangly thing!" she exclaimed and she was off, chasing it. Mum was taking pictures and seemed pleased with Josie.

"Come on Tobes," she said, waving it in my direction. But I was having none of it.

She later said it is another gift for us from her manager's daughter. Little Madison drew pictures of things cats like to chase - a mouse, a ball, a fish and a smiley dog and attached them to a piece of string for us. Mum wanted a picture so she could show how much we liked it.

She'll just have to show how much Josie liked it. I'm still not sure.



November 26th 2014 10:49 pm
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Normally on a Wednesday evening my mum goes out but yesterday she got a phone call.

"Yes, that will be fine. OK" she said and then "I have one hour to get this place respectable!" So Josie and I made ourselves scarce as that usually entails the hoover. We are not fans of the hoover.

When I came back in peoples were sitting all around. Mum's House Group were meeting at ours this time. My mum had stolen my bed to sit on. I wandered in and politely said hello to everyone and had a good sniff in their handbags in case any of them had kitty treats in there. They didn't. Mum did tell me it's not good manners to dip a paw in a visitor's bag but she had a crinkly bag that required further investigation.

They were reading and talking and frankly I wasn't getting enough attention so I wandered into the middle of the room, stretched myself out as big as could be and tickled the nearest foot. Everyone laughed and that pleased me. I then just joined in every now and then with a helpful meow when I could make some contribution to the topic under discussion.

Then Josie came in. She was a bit shy at first and stayed by my mum but seeing that I was the one they were looking at she wanted some attention too so she went crazy cat - running here, there and everywhere.

Mum said it was lucky that they all like cats as we weren't the best behaved we've ever been. I thought we were quite lovely and helped everyone feel at home.


My mum says some weird things

November 25th 2014 10:37 pm
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She was late home last night and Josie and I wanted to go out. So Josie asked, very politely, for my mum to hold the door open for her. My mum did do that and then Josie pushed her head out of the doorway and sniffed the air. She was considering the damp, the smells - what other cats have been around, was she better off indoors? Lots to think about.

"Get a move on. I have better things to do than stand here holding the door," said my mum. No she hasn't.

"I don't know why I do this. The whole point of a cat flap is that you can come in and out by yourselves," she added.

"No we can't" I said, firmly.

I got the cold look. "Before I went away I washed the kitchen floor. When I came back there were lots of muddy paw prints around your cat flap so at least one of you used it and used it lots."

Sighs. It's not like you see my mum having to push any doors with her head. It's just not dignified. So yes, in an emergency, we can open our own door but why would we? We need my mum to feel useful and be opening it for us.

Josie did go out, as did I, but not for long. The damp plays havoc with the fur. We were out just long enough to top up the mud on our paws to replace what my mum had cleaned up. More making her feel useful. We are the cats that keep on giving!


Cats should be dignified

November 24th 2014 10:39 pm
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We had a lovely day with my mum yesterday. Then at one point she picked up a bag and said she was going next door as she had brought them a gift to say thank you for feeding us. Only they had gone out so we still have the bag.

"Did you bring us anything back?" I asked. Compensation for her absence is surely our due.

You could see the thoughts whirring and then a smile, "Yes, I did." She delved in her handbag and produced a bag of kitty treats. "One of my friends gave me these for you."

She has some good friends.

Then I as I was munching I noticed something. "Were you peckish on your journey back?"

For the bag had been opened and presumably some treats removed. I've never seen my mum eat kitty treays but there's always a first time.

"There's a cat at the venue called George. She lifts a paw for treats. It's so cute. I had to demonstrate several times."

"She does what?" I was really hoping I had misheard.

"She sits there and raises a pretty-please paw," said my mum.

We will never do that. We have our pride. We get given our treats and do not perform for them.

"I think I may have spoiled you two," commented my mum.

You cannot spoil a cat. Nothing is too good for us.


We were left alone again

November 24th 2014 12:36 am
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On Friday out came Big Bag and my mum was gone. Our neighbours did come and feed us. When my mum came back yesterday evening she said that she had really missed us. well - if she doesn't want to miss us all she has to do is not to go away!

She gave us our supper and then said, "That's odd. I wonder why they left the biscuits like that." For instead of being closed the bag was wide open at the top.

I looked at her blankly. "Peoples do odd things. What can I say?"

Then she looked more closely. "Why are there paw prints up here?"

"Ah yes. It's coming back to me. We did self-service on the biscuits" I explained.

"You know the rules," said my mum crossly.

The rule is that we are not to be seen on the kitchen sides. Mum did not see us there. We had broken no rules. I thought the self-service thing was inspired. One less job for my mum if we help ourselves but the bag is now closed. Hopefully as loosely as last time so we can open it again when we need to.

Anyway my mum was only grumpy as she was tired. She went to bed and slept and slept and slept. Past breakfast time and past going to work time and on she slept. Finally she did wake up and is drinking ridiculous amounts of tea. And since she's been back every time she stands up she groans. I gather there was a LOT of line dancing at her weekend. We have no sympathy!



November 21st 2014 12:34 am
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My mum had some making up to do to me and Josie and we had a lovely cosy evening. Josie curled up on my mum's lap and I sat next to them enjoying the occasional stroke and we were happy as can be.

"One thing I like about cooler weather," said my mum, "is that you two like to be indoors with me. If this was a summer's evening you would be off out."

I considered this.

"One thing I like about cooler weather is that you wear fluffy stuff," I said.

In summer it's all cotton and you can't get a decent paddy paw going in cotton but a wooly jumper or snuggly fleece. Perfect. Josie agrees - when my mum's getting changed you'll often find Josie poised to snuggle up on a discarded dressing gown or whatever.


Only herself to blame

November 19th 2014 10:44 pm
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My mum did not come home until really late last night. We had given up hope of ever seeing her again.

Naturally we wanted some supper and a run in the garden but whilst supper we could have no run for us. My mum went straight to bed.

We are quite obliging cats so went to bed too but, inevitably, our springy legs woke us up bright and early. Josie was the brave one and jumped on my sleeping mum with a polite "Good morning" and then "is it time to run now?" I heard her ask.

My mum isn't the easiest person to understand when she's half asleep so her, "Leave me be. It's the middle of the night" might well have been a "I love chatting to my cats in the middle of the night and it would be awesome if you two could chase each other around for a while."

We did choose that latter interpretation. Given what a marvellous entertainment she had last night she is surprisngly grumpy this morning.

Anyway if she doesn't want us lively in the night she needs to be home to let us out in the evening. No more company quiz nights for her. (Her team didn't even win!)


Mystery Box

November 18th 2014 10:42 pm
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My mum came home last night with a mystery box, a sort of crate covered with plastic. If Josie and I hadn't needed our supper I would have been right in there, vestigating.

As it was I had my supper, evening patrol, snuggles with my mum - the evening flew by.

Luckily I woke up in the night and remembered it. Off I trotted. What was in there? Kitty food? New toys? I couldn't wait to find out.

Carefully I tugged at the plastic. Hm - quite well packed in. The contents must be very valuable. A rootle round with a paw and yes, in.

"Josie - come quick," I called. "There's something alive in here. I cane see his fur. We must release him immediately."

I heard movement behind me and looked up but it wasn't Josie it was my mum. She's good at opening stuff. I carried on tugging at the plastic, hoping she would get the idea.

"What are you doing Toby?" she asked before adding, "It's 3am." She often helpfully tells me the time when we talk in the night.

"I am heroically and bravely rescuing an imprisoned animal," I explained.

Mum lifted the plastic and looked. "It's a teddy bear."

I like teddy bears. They are good to snuggle up with. "Help me then."

To my dismay my mum put the plastic back. "It's not our bear. We are looking after raffle prizes. Looking after doesn't mean pawing and clawing at them."

She seemed pretty firm on the subject but maybe I'll have another go while she is at work today. We do have some bears but I think we do have room for one more.


Wild cats

November 17th 2014 10:42 pm
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My mum was looking at a news website when a photo caught my eye.

"He's a handsome chap. What brave and heroic thing has he done?"

"That's just a stock photo. The article is about cats."

"What does it say?"

My mum scanned it to get straight to the good parts. "Whilst dogs have been domesticated and bred to live with humans the DNA of a wild cat is almost identical to, well - to yours."

This is not news. "Cats are all pretty much lions and tigers," I agreed.

"That would be so much more impressive if you weren't lying on your back having your tummy rubbed," said my mum.

I like having my tummy rubbed.

"Then it says that cats could just go out and carry on with their wild lives but they hang out with humans for the rewards."

"There are rewards?" Things are looking up. "When do we get them?"

"You get fed."

"Not always the flavour I would choose."

"You get tummy rubs."

"Not enough"

"You get warm places to sleep."

"That I have to share with Josie."

Mum had better get this reward thing sorted out quick smart or I may unleash the inner wild!

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