The Cats...

We're very much cat-loving people, and love to have them around the house. We live on the edge of a village, surrounded by countryside, and think that this gives cats an excellent quality of life. Sadly, though, we have lost several over the years.

First, there was Lucy, who came with Jacqueline when she moved in with Pete. Lucy was a lovely ball of black fluff who got knocked over when Alice was around 18 months old. The sight of Alice looking for, and calling out "Ishy", was heartbreaking.


Barney (1999-2005)


Maisie (1999-2012)

Barney and Maisie came to us in 2001. Barn was a wonderful, placid boy who died on 27th August 2005, after his kidneys failed him for the second time. We'll never know what caused his problems in the first place. Of all the cats I've known, Barn was possibly the stupidest, most docile, most loving of them all. He even allowed Alice near him from an age when when most cats (and indeed most humans) would have run a mile. We still miss him, and hope he had a happy life with us.


Carlo (2006-2008)

To even up the house once again (too many females!), Carlo the Kitten came to live with us on 1st July 2006, aged just ten weeks. A swashbuckler from the start, Carlo caught his first wood pigeon at just three months old - the pigeon was bigger than he was - and quickly became the scourge of rodents and birds in the vicinity. He developed a special relationship with Alice, who was particularly devastated when the boy, again, was killed by someone driving past the house on 7th November 2008, aged just 2½. If we can take any consolation from this, it is that Carlo was tremendously athletic, solid muscle and built like the proverbial brick ****house, and never lived to know illness, pain or infirmity. But it's a poor bargain, especially for Alice.

Maisie then had the house to herself - she much preferred it that way in any case - and lived with us happily for many years. Maisie was very much a seasonal cat. In the summer we'd see her once a day, whilst in the winter she'd generally be found under her favourite radiator. Smart, eh? She would be very affectionate when she was in the mood, and one of her favourite ploys was to jump onto peoples' shoulders, which could sometimes cause unpredictable behaviour from unwary visitors! Maisie went missing in September 2012, we have no idea what happened to her.

We had made a decision that once Maisie went, we would not have any more cats. But the trouble with this stance is that they're just so darned lovable! We lasted six months before Jac weakened, and we took a visit to Blue Cross. The result, in March 2013, was Booboo and Animée (not names chosen by us!), a brother-and-sister 7-year-old pair. It is very spooky but these two are very reminiscent of Barney and Maisie. Booboo (the boy) is a lovely, lovable, docile old thing, most likely to be found either asleep somewhere, demanding a fuss, or eating. Animée, on the other hand, has become amazingly fit since she came here. She loves hunting, even the bell on her collar has made no difference. We just wish she'd manage not to let them escape under the furniture!