Five O'Clock Somewhere

Welcome to Five O'Clock Somewhere, where it doesn't matter what time zone you're in; it's five o'clock somewhere. We'll look at rural life, especially as it happens in Rio Arriba County, New Mexico, cats, sailing (particularly Etchells racing yachts), and bits of grammar and Victorian poetry.

Monday, August 14, 2006

A different sort of cat

Buddy may no longer be around, but …

Before we left for the Dillon Open, we had left supplies out for Buddy, the stray cat who seemed to have adopted us. We got dispensers that would hold several pounds of dry food and a gallon of water, so even if we weren’t here, he would have food and water.

When we returned, we discovered that the food dispenser had been taken apart, and there was no sign of Buddy. My guess was that a raccoon or some such had dismantled the food dispenser – raccoons are clever that way – and that Buddy had gone elsewhere in search of food or been scared off by whatever got the food.

Yesterday, we thought maybe Buddy had returned. Tadpole (whose new glasses are on order and should arrive this week) thought he saw a gray cat go across the hillside behind the house, and then I thought I heard Buddy’s meow, which sounds very much like a kitten mewing. So we put some food out on the front porch for him. However, nobody came to get the food, and we didn’t see Buddy.

It turns out that what I heard yesterday was kittens mewing, not Buddy, and what Tadpole saw was one of those kittens, who probably outweigh Buddy half again. Just now, I heard the mewing again through the window next to my computer, and when I looked up, there was a mother bobcat and two kittens, maybe only 15 feet away, walking right past the window. She paused and looked up at me for a moment, and then she continued past, keeping an eye on the kittens, one of whom was romping ahead after a butterfly, the other of whom was falling behind exploring crevices in the rocks. I watched as the family made its way up the hill, their golden coats bright, blending into the sun-drenched rocks. The mother cat paused again to look at me, ears up, stumpy tail twitching, while the slowpoke kitten scampered to catch up, and then the trio disappeared into the brush.


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