Wednesday, 1st October

Timmy and I played a new game this morning while breakfast was being prepared. It was Timmy’s idea. He said  ‘you hide under the rug and I’ll find you.’

I thought that he might have an unfair advantage, but he made a great thing about looking for me by jumping all over the rug – especially the lumpy part where I was hiding – and then pretending he couldn’t find me. Then he came back and jumped on me again. He said it was a great game but I’m not so sure myself.

Thursday, 9th October

I told you before that I collect all sorts of things, but I have a huge feather collection now. Mum counted them all up and there were 25 – all different sizes and colours. But even I surpassed myself today when I was out up the back alley going for a walk. Some of the leaves have fallen off the trees and they make a funny crunchy rustly sound when I walk over them.

I saw something sticking out from under a big flat leaf so I went over to investigate and found the biggest feather I’ve ever seen in my life. It was huge! I had to take it home and show Mum so I scooped it up and carried back to the cat flap. It was so big that I struggled to get it through and had to turn sideways so that I wouldn’t bend the feather.

Mum was in the front room with her legs in the air again, breathing, and stuff, when she saw me come in with something dangling from my mouth. After the ginormous moth situation she’s a bit wary when she sees me with things dangling from my mouth, so she stopped breathing and brought her legs to the floor and was hurriedly trying to get up before she had another shock to deal with.

I laid the feather at her feet beaming from ear to ear with pride. ‘Wow! Ollie! That’s some feather!’ she said proudly, stroking me and picking up the feather. ‘I think it’s from a magpie. Aren’t you clever!’

I said that indeed, I was very clever, and picked it up to take it to the dining room where I played with it for ages before leaving it in the feather pile – 26 now!

Monday, 13th October

Had a VERY EMBARRASSING experience today. I’m not really sure why I’m telling you – unless it’s to act as a warning to check your rear view before going out.

Eddie came round for a quick snack today. Having the sulks from a few weeks ago – the T’ai Chi thing – must have sharpened his appetite because he polished off the leftovers in all our six bowls. He said we should go out and Do Stuff together. He didn’t say EXACTLY what Stuff we should Do but it was a nice day – perfect for Stuff Doing.

I’d had my breakfast just before Eddie called round so I needed to go to the toilet before our adventures began. I found a spot in the corner of our garden and was doing what I needed to do, and then off we went.

We walked up the back alley behind our gardens, poking and prodding interesting looking things and sniffing to see who had passed that way before us and whether we knew them or not.

Suddenly, Eddie, who now was walking behind me, started laughing his head off. I turned round to see what had caused this outburst, but he said it was nothing. I turned to go on my way and he collapsed on a pile of discarded boxes, soggy from the early morning dew, in a fresh batch of guffaws.

Feeling a tad miffed with Eddie, I decided I didn’t want to Do any more Stuff with him and I returned home. When Sam saw me and went to sniff my rear end, he burst out laughing too. Becoming more annoyed by the nano-second I asked him what was so amusing, and with tears streaming down his sleek black cheeks, he hurled himself through the catflap – no doubt to join Eddie.

Hearing the commotion made by Sam, Timmy had come into the kitchen. He looked at my bottom and, making a strange face while he tried to swallow the urge to laugh too, he pulled off a big wet leaf which had stuck itself to my bottom.

‘Plums and custard!’ I found myself saying. ‘So that’s why Eddie and Sam were laughing!’ Mortified, I thanked Timmy and crept upstairs to the back bedroom, joining Garfield under the sofa bed, where I gave my bottom a thorough going-over as if its very life depended on it. ‘It happens to us all,’ said Garfield, patting my paw with his own, ‘don’t let them get to you!’ 

Saturday, 18th October

A very big package arrived today, brought by ParcelMan, which was a nice surprise for Mum. She opened it up and found that she had won a prize in a competition she entered back in June. It was a radiator bed and after a bit of effort on her part, she managed to put it together. She put it on the radiator in the hallway and I jumped straight in to test it out. I curled up and was a sleep in minutes, the warmth of the radiator at my back. During the day, Sam and Billy tried it out too. We all liked it. 

Sunday, 26th October

British Summertime ended today and the clocks went back one hour! Great news – I get that hour back that Mum lost for me back in March when she waffled on for ages about Pingü and frozen penguin bottoms. Spent that hour lying in the donut bed on the dining room table. As it is placed next to the radiator, Sam and I have a fight for it first thing in the mornings when the heating comes on.  Sometimes he wins, sometimes I win, and sometimes Billy jumps in it while we’re still fighting – and neither of us wins!

Thursday, 30th October

Had a very TRAUMATIC EXPERIENCE today. The door to the cupboard under the stairs was open slightly Ollie-sized for convenience so I decided to have a look inside.

Mum usually keeps this door closed as Billy and Sam have been in there sometimes and sprayed on things. It’s an exciting Aladdin’s Cave of things that never see the light of day normally so I was dead chuffed to get the opportunity of this rare glimpse into a world hitherto unknown.

I recognised the white laundry basket, which was empty, so I tried it on for size – as they say. Despite not having any soft clothing waiting to be ironed, I curled up and was soon fast asleep.

Sometime later, Mum got her coat out of the cupboard and then – something dreadful happened. She Closed The Door! For good measure, she put a dining chair up against it as a deterrent to Sam, who can open this door. My fate was sealed.

She called out her ‘goodbyes’ and off she went. I just slept because that was what I planned to do. But a bit later I woke up and decided I wanted some lunch. I made my way in the dark to the door and called out but all the others would have been upstairs in their usual snooze-spots and no one heard me.

There was nothing to do, nothing to eat, nothing to see so I had no other choice but to go back to the laundry basket. I thought going to sleep would take my mind off my stomach wanting some dinner.

I tried to think back to what Mum had said as she was leaving. If she is going to be a long time she usually says ‘See you later boys.’ But if she’s only going to be a short while, she normally says ‘Won’t be long boys.’ Try hard as I could, I just couldn’t remember.

Sometime later, I heard noises. The chair was moved and the door opened and Mum hung up her coat. Just as she was about to close the door, I cried out loudly and Mum nearly had a heart attack. I expected ‘Plums and Custard Ollie’ but she was so amazed to see me as I stumbled out into the light blinking wildly like a miner after his shift underground has ended.

She scooped me up and gave me a big cuddle. ‘Oh Ollie!’ she said, giving me lots of kisses, ‘you MUST be starving!’

My Traumatic Experience had lasted over 11 hours and all the others were very kind to me. But I don’t want to go in there again, in a hurry. 

Dogs Come when Called

"Dogs come when called. Cats take a message and get back to you."

"Of course, every cat is really the most beautiful woman in the room."

Edward Verrall Luca (essayist)

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