Thursday, 15 December 2011

Good Morning Kitty...

I remember seeing a cartoon a few years a go. The title escapes me, but I cried with laughter at the accuracy of a cat's behaviour, whilst trying to wake up his guardian...One does not own a cat! At first, the cat tries gentle tactics, but to no avail. Then, it tries plan b, the kneading technique - like extracting milk from a teat. Again, no movement. Then, the claws.... The human twitches slightly and the cat quickly curls up, pretending to be asleep... Still, nothing. This goes on for a good while and the tactics become more aggressive and calculated. The Man still does not stir. Until, a very impatient and hungry kitty, picks up a baseball bat and wacks the man over the head!
You may think this was just a humourous animation, but believe me, cats are truly this manipulative. Otto, one of my cats, uses a similar strategy to extract me out of bed. However, this is usually at five or six o'clock in the morning. And, I am delighted to inform you that he does not possess a baseball bat. But, he loves banging on the food cupboard door, pulling out the fluff from the mattress, clawing the curtains, sitting on the pillow and relentlessly meowing in my ear and scratching at the room door. He has also learned how to open cupboards, but cannot open tins or packets; I believe he finds this pretty frustrating and makes sounds of a spoiled child not getting their own way. When all fails, then, he attacks Jaffa, his brother.  Jaffa will then get up and start with the drying rack. He stands up on his hinds and pulls the washing down, knowing this really annoys me. Generally, at this point, Otto is sitting quietly, pretending to be completely innocent, like butter would not melt... Finally, it's a wrestling match.... Both cats on hinds boxing like kangaroos. Nine (ish) kilos of kitty throwing their weight on me...
Okay, it's time to rise but not so shiny... Then, it's all kisses and soft, kittenish cuddles... gentle padding on my face and all is forgiven in that moment.

Tuesday, 13 December 2011

Universe Calling...

I have just come out of the other side of a relentless headache. Two days of pain. So much so, that the base of my head is actually swollen and feeling very tender to touch. I do suffer from headaches considerably and have adjusted parts of my lifestyle to bring slight respite. However, one little thing can set it off, then, it builds and becomes tighter and more tense... This is the only time I take pills.... Nurofen usually. Yesterday I needed to get on with my day...chores, shopping, bank, post office, etc. and fighting through the nausea, (mind over matter),  I managed to get by without throwing up from head pain and sickness, thanks to the pain killers. Then, I had a revelation! Living in a house with eleven other people, on a busy road, in London. The traffic really is non - stop, the front door (by my room) is constant, the boy who lives above may as well be an elephant, the girl living opposite leaves her door to bang closed all the time.... it is a constant cycle of noise. Not sounds of life but intrusive, irritating, polluting noise.
Today, felt a little better. The pain had subsided and the house was quiet. But only for a while. Just as I relaxed in to my own rhythm........ The road workers began drilling outside my window! Is the universe trying to tell me something?
Sometimes, I long for the sound of silence... Something mellifluous, something gentle and sweet. Just a break from the city stress that likes to reside inside my head...








 

Wednesday, 7 December 2011

Feeling Festive...

I have just seen the most glorious winter sunset. I stopped in my tracks and let out a gasp.... Magnificent orange gently giving way to the twilight. Then, behind me the moon was rising into the deepest blue. Suddenly, a porch lit up with a twinkling reindeer and it felt like Christmas....


  Sadly, I didn't have the camera for that festive sunset, but this is one I took last December.

Saturday, 3 December 2011

The Scent Of Winter...

From time to time it feels like I am on the cusp of a great story.... Then, it's just silence. It is as though a giant spoon is infinitely stirring the ingredients which will later present some awe - inspiring tale. Well, that is to say the small detail that bugs me today.... A little frustrated, but rest assured it will come out eventually. I believe it's just a case of clearing the webs.... Yesterday I went out walking which is a wonderful way to clarify the head and get the thought process in to action. I even remembered to bring my voice recorder for moments or a spark of genius.... But alas, nothing came.
The air was particularly fresh, it smelt clean and that made me feel good.... A  deep breath....in through the nostrils....out.... Breathing is something I have become more conscious of, due to giving up my old friend, tobacco, five months a go... I have probably spent four of those five months coughing, sweating (oh, women glow...), being grumpy, snappy, the list goes on..... However, I can breath deeply and enjoy sweet aromas.... After puffing for thirty years, believe me, a simple walk on the common on a cold December day can be quite delicious....
It remains to be said though, there is nothing as comforting as the smell of my cats when they come in out of the cold.... their coats all puffed up and soft....I love to bury my face in their tummies.... breath in.....breath in...... mmmm.

Thursday, 1 December 2011

A little London Wildlife...


Sometimes I enjoy sitting in a London green space, fortunately there are quite a few. Then, with pen, camera and coffee in hand.... I will watch the world go by... Good for the soul.

Wednesday, 30 November 2011

Plumping up the magpies...

Okay.... I have spent the best part of the last year studying big cats and have spent the best years of my life living with them... However, I get mildly distracted from time to time when I hear other tales of animals in distress.... I have, at times, been accused of being too emotional. Then, isn't it better to be true to your feelings? Everyone is driven towards their personal goals.... Some would argue that a woman devoted to creatures of the feline world is sad and, perhaps a little crazy. Where does that stigma derive from anyway? Cats are cool, independent, masters of survival and look beautiful too.  Well, the 'Flat - headed  cat' is not such a looker, but the majority of big cats are killed because of their exquisite coats! Not that looks are everything! they are cool for many reasons....
Slight distraction, yet again, but have been noticing, because of the mild autumn,  (in fact 2011 has been one of the mildest years on record) that the squirrels and magpies have been foraging in abundance and are all looking quite plump! Shame magpies are not on the Christmas menu... (joke) However, I do believe that we are in for a very cold winter.... Another white Christmas? Sorry, folks, but snow still brings out the child in me.... so, yes please to a white one.

Wednesday, 23 November 2011

Beautiful Autumn,Beautiful Rhino...

What a stunning Autumn this has been. Bright, golden, crisp and fresh. Dewy, softly lit mornings and the aroma of burning wood fires in warmly lit homes at twilight... I love this season, when, in all its glory.....
However, the other day it was made official - The Black rhino is extinct in West Africa. Poachers!   Sadly, it's too late for these guys. Humans have destroyed their habitat and killed them out of greed and a lack of respect, compassion, interest or concern .... The remaining rhinos need protection so that another devastating dent within the natural world can be avoided... (Hopefully). This is all down to chinese medicine and their ongoing belief that ingredients within the horn of a rhino have healing remedies. However, it has still not been scientifically proven and in the meantime this incredible animal is being wiped out.
The world evolves and the strongest species survive and learn, over time, to adapt to new environments. Hasn't the rhino shown us its ability to do this? So, have we not the intelligence to see the damage?
I watched a wonderful film at the Science Museum called "Born To Be Wild". Viewing was in "high technology" in 3D on a massive screen... wow, I was there, truly. My tears flowed as a baby elephant had witnessed its mother being killed by poachers and was left terrified. Surrounded by bull elephants, this little guy could have easily been crushed and killed. Luckily, though, it was rescued and adopted. Elephants seem to remember only the bad things and suffer considerably with images of slaughter and grief and despair in their mind. They sometimes need years of therapy to aid their recovery from a devastating experience.  Sound familiar? We humans are not the only emotionally intelligent creatures on the planet. In fact, we need weapons to feel good about ourselves. Elephants are not trophies and their tusks do not have healing ingredients. They deserve the freedom to roam and nurture and love... just like us.

Wednesday, 16 November 2011

Violence Towards Animals

The other day, I witnessed a young boy of about 8 years of age, kicking and tugging at a small, white, fluffy dog - no bigger than a six month old puppy.... My blood boiled, and, fueled by a rush of adrenalin, I ran to the scene.What could I do though? Feeling pretty helpless, I exchanged a few (diplomatic words) and walked away, feeling very shaken.
Situations like this are always upsetting and evoke deep emotions within my psyche... A few years ago, a South American artist (name slips my mind), starved a dog to death as part of his show. He left the dog in an isolated room, with no food or water. While visitors to this exhibition looked on intrigued, yet disgusted, the show still went on.... the dog on death row was, apparently for the sake of art! I remember, once again, feeling pretty hopeless - even though I responded with thousands of other animal rights campaigners. How could this happen? How sad. 
As timed moves on, the urge to make a difference is more apparent, but, again, the question arises, what can I do? 
Well, I am currently within the realms of study attempting to facilitate the need within to express and raise awareness of some kind. Upon this journey I hope to discover a purpose and some direction. I hope to enlighten and give some insight into my world and, perhaps share new knowledge, stories and thoughts.






Saturday, 5 November 2011

And So it Begins...

For some time now, there has been a deep yearning in the core of my soul to speak up and be counted. Yes, you've heard it all before... another perception on life, its meaning, the stuff it throws in our direction, the joys, sorrows, wonders and, sometimes, surprises. Oh, and, naturally... love.  Okay, well that would be a surprise because to date, the love of my life is Jaffa. One of my cats. Actually, the love is shared equally amongst the three of us, but there is a definite connection that goes deep with Jaffa. Yes, I am a woman in midlife who coexists with two moggies. Yet, I wouldn't have this part of my life any other way. They have shared spaces with me, warmed me, licked the tears off my face, they have moved house with me many times and continue to come home and have done for twelve years... They are true companions and keep me grounded and stable when all else, including some humans, (especially x boyfriends)... leave. This is not a sad tale though, I am a believer in things happening for good reason and at the right time.