In Exile-land it is usually best to do things early in the day, before the heat builds up or the traffic. As Saturday is the only day the shops are open and Marius is home, there is always a bit of a scramble to decide what we will do.
There is the temptation to stay in bed and do nothing but drink tea and snooze, but usually we resist that impulse. Marius almost always gets up at about 5.30 on the weekends - which is 'sleeping in' for him, while I lollop in bed for oooh, a good hour longer. As promised, this morning I went for a swim - my second this year.
We like to swim early before the sun is on the pool and before it is full of er, young persons. It is a huge, crescent-shaped pool, probably visible from space if you happen to be up there, but very awkward to swim laps in. If there are young persons playing, there is no clear area for them away from the serious swimmers, and they do seem to lack courtesy.
I like to have the pool to myself and this morning we were lucky, it was empty when we arrived just before 7, and empty when we left just before 8. Well, empty of other humans. Pink Floyd, the uninvited lodger, followed us to the pool and stayed to life-guard while we swam. He mooched off to explore the gardens for a bit, and followed a pigeon who came for a drink, but otherwise, he sat under one of the sun loungers close to the side of the pool and meowed to me as I splashed about.
|Pink Floyd yesterday at the pool|
We first met Floyd last October, as a young-ish kitten. He was waiting in our car port one evening when we had been to the shops. He was very friendly, thin, and talkative. I thought the other orphan cats must have told him we were a good touch because he was quite sure it was our house he'd been sent to occupy. I took him up to the corner of the street to feed him some crunchies, which he wolfed into with great enthusiasm, but when I started to walk home, he abandoned the food to follow me and weave himself around my ankles. I went back and stood over him and his food so that he would eat it. He was far too thin to be leaving food for Mr Manners.
|Pink Floyd October 2010|
Floyd stayed around for a couple of weeks, accompanying us on walks, enjoying our largesse and sleeping on our door mat. He stood up to passing dogs and held his ground against the local tomcat bullies: plucky for such a small chap. He was pleasant to everybody. And persistent in his attempts to sneak into our house and meet our cats.
He disappeared as suddenly as he'd appeared. Marius was sure that being such a sweet friendly cat, someone had given him a home - or he'd found his way back to the place he'd arrived from. Gradually we stopped looking for him, and forgot about him as we were quite occupied with other dramas.
About a month or so ago, we took a different route for our evening stroll, and walked in an area we hadn't been to for ages. As we turned to come home, a ginger cat came streaking past us, then stopped and meowed. Marius said, I think that's Pink Floyd. He looked well, not too thin, no injuries or wounds, nice and clean . He was more wary than he used to be, and quite a bit bigger. We were pleased that Marius seemed to have been right - he'd found a home.
Well, he may have found a home, but having been reunited with us, he promptly forgot where that home was, and has taken up residence on our door step again.
Some people on the compound have been known to adopt cats - or bring cats with them - and when it is time for them to leave, have decided that finding new homes for their pets or taking them back home is just too much trouble. Some of the 'orphans' we've fed have definitely been some body's pet, once upon a time.
We don't know if that is what has happened to Floyd. We don't know if he has wandered too far and got lost, got tired of his new home or if it got tired of him. We've taken him for walks back to the area he re-joined us in, hoping to jog his memory about home, or that someone would recognise him and claim him, to no avail.
I don't feed him a lot. I hope he'll get hungry or frustrated with the short rations and go home. In the mornings when I walk Marius to the bus, Floyd is on the door step, trying to get it. He starts meowing through the door when he hears us getting ready. He's waiting when Marius returns, 12 hours later.
Sometimes he jumps on to the kitchen window sill and talks to our two cats through the window:
Sometimes he simply sits and looks lonely. Do you know anyone who would like a nice ginger boy?