I love my friend Ella. She’s one of the kindest, funniest people I know. She emails most mornings having me on the floor with her recap of the previous day. I’ve been urging her to begin a blog, diary form, the same way she writes to me. I have no doubt it would be a major cyber success.
Ella is a huge animal lover, and I’m not just talking cats and dogs. Every four-legged creature on the planet is welcomed in her backyard. If a bear showed up she’d happily serve him lunch on the porch.
Table for one?
Right now she’s in the midst of a squirrel fest. It started about 3 months ago when she began feeding one. Then he brought a friend who brought a friend who brought a friend, so now there are about 12 of them who show up faithfully every morning for breakfast. Ella says she can even tell them apart.
I laughed when she told me she buys her nuts in bulk from nuts.com since they eat like sailors. “It’s cheaper,” she said, and she promised her husband to try to be more economical nut wise. “They’ve gotten very fat Susannah. I mean they’ve doubled in size…do you think it’s bad for their health?”
“I don’t know,” I said, “maybe they just need more exercise like the rest of us..besides, it’s as if they won a contest being fed every morning like they’re at a good hotel.”
This brings me to a cat that also visits. He belongs to someone who lets him roam so he pops in to see Ella who leaves him food and treats. She prefers to watch him nosh from the window since he’s not too friendly. He’s more of an outside kitty with a busy agenda, like a Republican who drops by the buffet table.
But then Ella had a problem. The nuts she would leave out during the day in case the gang needed a snack, attracted a big, old rat. According to Ella, this guy was the size of a Buick pulling into the driveway and he’s been coming every day. So she, who could never kill anything in or out of a trap, even though her husband went out and bought one, decided to have a little chat with the cat.
I wasn’t there but I imagine it went something like this: “Excuse me, but, may I have a word with you (Ella is very polite)? I know you’re busy but I could really use your help. I need you to scare off the rat that’s been coming around here lately. I’m worried he’s going to hurt, or even eat one of my squirrels.”
Since we already know he’s not Mr. personality, Cat doesn’t jump up and say,”Sure lady, just tell me where he is, I’ll take care of it.”
Instead he yawns and starts licking his balls. Not a good sign, is it?
Ella, who sees she has to negotiate, says politely but firmly, “If you don’t mind me saying, I’ve been very nice to you, feeding you every day, not expecting anything in return, not even a little nuzzle here and there let alone a thank you, and could you put that leg down please? It sure would be nice if you could help me out a little.” Of course knowing her she was probably grilling him a fish while she was saying all this. The way to a cat’s heart is through his stomach after all.
So finally they cut a deal and Ella thinks, okay, that’s that…problem solved, however….
turns out despite his sass, Cat’s not a very ambitious hunter. Ella tells me the rat, while Cat’s busy eating, tools right on by, like in a Tom and Jerry cartoon. Not good, she thinks, and her husband, or the Hubs, as she calls him, said, “If the cat can’t handle it, that’s it, we’re going with the trap.”
Then one morning she sees the rat scurry in the yard with half his tail missing. Apparently Cat finally stepped up, but instead of being happy, Ella got upset. She ran to tell her husband who hates to see her cry despite the circumstances, so he told her not worry, the tail will grow back. “I’m not sure I believe him,” she said to me in an email, “so I told him I was thinking about taking the rat to the vet.”
Now do you see why she’d shake up the blog world with her tails and stories?
“What did the Hubs say when you told him this?”