Mum has recently been suffering from something called vertigo and she’s worse in the mornings when she gets up.  She puts her hands on the walls to stop herself from falling, although I don’t understand how the wall could lift her up if she did fall.  Gibbs and I had a brief conversation while indulging in a particular good brand of catnip the other evening after a rather delicious supper.  We were discussing what we would do if she fell over. Neither of us could lift her up, and when we mentioned it to Dad, he said he wouldn’t be able to lift her up in a month of Sundays.

Back to the walls, Mum said to me the other day: ‘Casey, I wonder how many hands in the past 100-odd years have touched these walls?’ (I should perhaps, at this juncture, point out that our house was built in 1901).  I carried on licking my bum – it was far more interesting to me than wondering about something I knew nothing about. 

Then she continued, as she is wont to do from time to time when she gets into her subject: ‘Can you imagine, Casey, (lick, lick), a man coming home from his day’s work, perhaps he called in to the inn up the road, and he’s had a few too many drinks.  In his cups, they would say back then, meaning he’s drunk rather more than he should have.  He might have held on to the wall to steady himself.’

‘Mmm, busy here, Mum.’

‘And what of little children, rising to their feet, perhaps for the first time, reaching out to the wall, to aid them?  Oh, if only this house could talk, I wonder what tales it would tell?’

‘If the house did start talking, Mum, you’d probably wet yourself and run up the street screaming!’  

Gibbs in his box, Casey alongsidePeople don’t value things, Mum said.  We cats’ don’t own property as such, apart from everything in the homes where we live as being ours, but our values are different from human beings.  It’s not important to us how old our bed is, or whether it is brand, spanking new.  It’s a bed.  We’ll sleep on it once and then move to the next available thing.  Gibbs loves his boxes; he has one under the dining table and one in the front room.  He often sleeps on the dining table where Mum has kindly put a towel; it wasn’t for him originally, as she was sanding down and painting some wooden chairs and she rested the chair on the towel while she worked, but in between times, she left it on the table and now Gibbs thinks it’s his.

In a day or so, Gibbs will find another bed, as will I.  When it’s all quiet at night, and Mum is in bed, fast asleep, the house creaks and groans.  Gibbs thinks it’s telling us stories about the past.  But that’s our secret, between me, Gibbs and the house!  Shh, don’t tell Mum! 

Till the next time

Casey xxx


Dogs Come when Called

"Dogs come when called. Cats take a message and get back to you."

"Of course, every cat is really the most beautiful woman in the room."

Edward Verrall Luca (essayist)