Playing GETCHA

The sun has moved from behind one of the pines and I roll over onto my face. From the house comes the distant eeeuh cries of Tango seeking one of us. She has become Pinky’s sidekick and follower. It is amusing to see her run after her small leader, her jack rabbit legs like furred pistons.

When I am not home, Pinky searches for me, too. My friend Jane tells me that recently she opened her kitchen door to find Pinky sitting on the mat. Jane had a long way to look down to find Pinky waiting there patiently. “Wrong house,” she said. “Lucille is next door.” Jane had been vacuuming her house. We both figure out that Pinky, acquainted with the sound of the machine, thinks I am in Jane’s house.

We play variations of GETCHA. Instead of going to the lawn, where I appear to be headed, I continue around the bend and hide. After a while, I peek out and see her running toward me. She has caught on to the trick. I laugh at her and, instead of jumping up on me as a dog might do to share the joke, she walks off and, ignoring me, begins grooming herself by the bird bath.

The next round is hers. She does not follow me to the lawn, and as I wait and wait and finally give up, I come upon her hiding behind a boxwood on the outside, exactly at the place where I walk through.


Mojo’s Way

I was casting around for a writing market for “Mojo’s Way,” a chronicle of my kitten’s growing pains based on Meow’s Way, which won in the cat category at the Animals Animals Animals Book Awards in Chicago. I did not go there to the awards,IMG_0509 fearing I might disappear in a snowdrift and not be discovered until next summer. It can be seen at “Mojo’s Way,” however, was an awkward length at 2300 words for cat magazines, which all prefer stories about 800 words or less.

Was it worth proposing to Modern Cat that my story be published in two or three increments? They are running a contest, but the limit is still 800 words. I Love Cats is adamant about their 800 words, as well. The pay there is $50 and emphasize the editor’s right to edit. I do not fear that part but the wall is always that 800 words.

I searched abroad and found Ozzicat in Australia — no pay but a most welcoming website with no length restrictions — and I sent the story there. I think they will publish it though I have no confirmation of that as yet.

In the meantime, I keep having to update the story. I expected that, because he is still only seven months old and a dauntless opportunist. I couldn’t find my jeans one day and searched to no avail, until I stepped on something under the dining table. I would have given much to see him dragging the jeans and not interfered just to see where he was taking them. I suspect he had planned to add them to his private stash where all his lost toys have ended up, but found the jeans wouldn’t fit wherever that place is.

This morning I changed my bedsheets with his help, and decided to leave him under the bottom sheet. No problem there; he found his way out in short order.

My adult cat, Loaner, watched all this, perhaps feeling relief that she was to be let alone for a while, but was disappointed. I suspect she would miss him, though, and he certainly would miss her, for he stays close most of the time. We are a team, all three of us.

On sunny days, the troops and I go to lie on the grass. Mojo sniffs dandelions between forays into my hair, while Loaner snores. We could do worse.