Cool cat on a tin roof


Pernod and Chatblis are now both three and a half years old. In the prime of their youth, but without the wisdom of old age. Every half year they become stronger and more dexterous. And get themselves into even more trouble. Recently they discovered that there is one window in the house with particular advantages.

It gives access to the roof above the patio. And that leads to all sorts of other slanting slopes that lead to heaven. Chatblis is the first one to slip through it behind my back. Only after one hour it strikes me that Pernod keeps turning restlessly in front of the door. And I can hear some faint meowing. I find Chatblis, shivering in the roof-gutter. Waiting to be rescued.

Learned one’s lesson, one would think. But no. From that moment on, that one window is the target of all cat longings. And by extension all roofs. Stop those two cunning creatures? I dare you to try. So I have to get them out of the gutter. Time and time again. And then it gets worse. One morning I hear moaning meowing but I can’t see Chatblis in the gutter. The silly little girl crawled even further and is now sitting on the ridge of the roof. Heavens above!

What does this show? Getting up is way easier than getting down. Just ask any mountaineer. Sloped roof tiles, slightly mossy… Consternation at Puts’. Chatblis, usually the quietest cat in the house, is squalling as if it’s the end of the world.

Pernod is complicating matters by spinning around my nervous ankles. I am in two minds about calling out the fire brigade (‘Or the army!’ my husband says laughingly) or fetching a ladder (‘You’d better rent a steeplejack too!’ my husband adds). Biting my nails I decide to wait. Deadlock lasts for one endless hour. Then Chatblis starts her descent in an extremely inelegant way.

Straddle-legged, backwards and with twenty outspread nails she scrambles gliding and sliding towards the gutter. I encourage her from where I stand: ‘Good job, girl!’, ‘Well done!’ as I move with arms outspread from left to right in order to catch her in case she falls.

I had my pre- dinner drink one hour early that day.

  • Publication out of the book Miauwkes’ by Veronique Puts. Like this story? Press the blue ‘follow’ button on the blog page and receive an email every time a new story is published.

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