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Sunday, 22 November 2015

Moment of Aargh (Glasgow series, Part 0001) and introducing Odin.

One thing definitely hasn't changed since moving to Glasgow. I am still the queen of WTF Did I Just Do? moments. I've managed to get to the train station in my slippers at least once in the last month.

Stace is on a baking kick, which is so awesome: I come in, and there's cake. And it's good cake, which is even more important.

This means that the butter, eggs, etc get used up pretty fast, so the other day when I went to make some toast, the butter was pretty much done. No problems - we have more in the freezer, one of those lidded little plastic tubs with an inner foil seal under the lid. The plan was to take it out, nuke it for 30 seconds so I could scrape enough off the top for the toast, and leave it out to defrost thoroughly, because in Glasgow you don't need to keep butter in the fridge come November. Hell, you could probably safely leave your milk out for most of the week. Our kitchen is the approximate temperature of a walk-in fridge anyway.

So, I bent down to the freezer, hauled the frozen tub of butter out, turned around to walk away, and promptly tripped over my own two feet. I didn't quite face-plant (Wahey!), but I flung out my hand to catch myself, and of course I used the hand holding the butter. It slammed off of the wall and escaped, sailing across the kitchen like The Little Butter Bar That Learnt How To Fly.

Me: Oh, crap. Not to worry, the lid's still on-

The lid must have been loosened during the bash against the wall. Half a second into the flight, it spun off of the top of the butter and tried to imbed itself in the microwave door.

A half second later, the inner foil fluttered gently down to the floor tiles.

Me: Aw, come on.

The butter, now lidless and foil-less, bounced off of the spare utensil drawer and whirred back at my face. I ducked. It slammed into the wall beside me and sailed back across the room.

Me: Holy sh-

The butter, which by all rights should've been firmly fixed by its own weight inside that bloody tub, separated from the container and dropped. On my foot. Frozen butter hurts, by the way. The container landed completely upright on the kitchen counter, spun twice, and stopped.

Me: Oh, fuck a duck.


Shortly after we moved into the house, we noticed a gorgeous black cat wandering around. The neighbour told me he's lived in the area for years, and the woman who had him died some time ago. One of her neighbours took him on. Unfortunately, I have no idea who, or if the person is even still in the area.

The cat I saw the first couple of times was desperately stalking pigeons. He caught a couple, and ate most of them. His coat was dull, and watching the way he walks makes me think there's a good touch of arthritis involved. Our bunch aren't allowed out without a harness or going into their outdoor pen, so the old boy spent a lot of summer sitting on the deck looking in at them, with Bast in particular watching him back and chirping. He was extremely skittish around humans, though.

Then he started coming to the front door. We have a couple of spare cat bowls, so I started putting a bowl down for him. (I later found out Stace was doing the same thing. There's a reason my cousin and I get on pretty well most of the time.)
On rainy, cold days, we leave a bowl of food in the front door alcove for him and leave the one door closed so he gets a bit of shelter and a place to sit while he gets his food.

His coat is starting to shine, and he's put on a bit of weight, but he's still pretty jumpy. We've called him Odin because his one eye tends to close slowly while he looks at you. I'm not sure whether it's a medical issue, but there seems to be constant clear discharge, and he won't let me close enough for long enough to get him into a carrier. I'd like to get that looked at, because it's bugging the hell out of me. He also has an overbite, which seems to be a thing with black toms in the UK. It is pretty freaking adorable, though. He'll let us stroke him, briefly, before settling down to eat.
He missed a couple of visits during the big storm we had last week, and we were both very relieved to see him one morning, waiting patiently for the doors to open so that he could get his breakfast.

We can't let him in the house because we have no clue whether his shots are up to date (Sheba got taken to the vet the day after I adopted her and was all up to date by the time the other two met her) and I won't take a chance with my three. Introducing a new cat can also be a tricky business, and it's almost impossible to turn an outdoor cat into an indoor cat and have a happy animal. Three indoor cats with no road-sense and access to a cat door would have the life expectancy of a soft-boiled egg since we live on a very busy road. It's a dilemma I can't see a way around just yet; any ideas that are feasible would be great.

Bast desperately wants to meet him. If he knows Odin is in the alcove, he hurls himself at the door chirping frantically. There's no hissing or growling, and knowing Bast he wants to play with a new friend, but since Odin could probably dismantle him in three seconds flat, that door is staying firmly closed for the meantime.

We're planning on putting a box and blanket down for him so if he wants to snuggle up for most of the day he can. It would be good to know he has a warm place when winter hits.