Reggie and the sunflowersThere were an assortment of tubs, pots and planters around the property, and because they had been such a success last year, it was decided to grow more sunflowers. The previous spring the seeds had been taken from birdseed as everyone was isolating, and not going out to the shops, which were all shut anyway. The big yellow blooms had done so well in the pots by the front door that the neighbours and passers-by often remarked how marvellous they looked. 

The sunflowers also attracted bees, which hadn’t gone unnoticed by Reggie the Persian cat, who would take a swipe at anything. A butterfly was his favourite, but a bee was a close second - not that he ever caught anything. He was a bit slow and porky due to his penchant for food, and eating anything his brother left over too.

As the sunflowers grew and bloomed, the bees were well out of range of his paws as they buzzed around the massive flower heads. His owner would pick him up and they would look around the pots giving Reggie a close up. We are not sure if it was the movement of bees or the buzz but something about them got him excited.

The catnip in the borders had flowered, and they also attracted bees.  Reggie could get up close and personal with them, but they never seemed as big as the bees on the sunflowers. As summer ended and the sunflowers were past their best, the garden was given an autumn clear up. The sunflowers had grown too tall and had started to bend until they could resist gravity no longer. The best of the remaining blooms were cut off and arranged in a bucket of water which was indeed a pleasing arrangement. Reggie thought so too. The giant bumble bees that had been ten feet up in the air now came down to within reach.  A burst of warm sunshine on Indian Summer afternoons lit the flowers and warmed the bees into action. Reggie had been out sunbathing, but the buzz of the bees had got his curiosity. 

Reggie sniffing the sunflowersHe sat by the bucket of flowers and pushed his nose into the flowers.  The bees were far too interested in nectar to notice two big orange eyes and a pink nose. Reggie got closer and closer, until he was level with a bee, but he couldn’t see what all the fuss was about.  Just as he leaned forward for a sniff, a bee flew off and a dusting of soft, delicate pollen sprinkled over his face and nose. It made him sneeze several times and needed a licked paw to wash off and a couple more of good sneezes to clear his little squashed nose. 

The flowers were then swooped up out of the bucket and taken inside to be arranged in a crystal vase, out of reach of Reggie … and the bees!

Carol Lake

A Cats Purr

"Cats make one of the most satisfying sounds in the world: they purr ...

A purring cat is a form of high praise, like a gold star on a test paper. It is reinforcement of something we would all like to believe about ourselves - that we are nice."

Roger A Caras