Recently in Feline follies Category



She has many names. Depending on whether she's being naughty or nice and what mood we're in.

Missy Moo
Minnie Moo
Young Lady
Pot de colle (glue-pot)
Cuddle Whore
Kitten Mitten
Furry McPurry
Purry McFurry
Stinky McStinkerson

She has been running through the apartment like a crazy thing, pausing occasionally to miaow at me = Cacophony
She ate some "wet food" and came to give me kisses as soon as she finished = Stinky McStinkerson
Sylvain is still in Sweden so I'm the "single parent", which means she is a serious "pot de colle".
We'll go to bed soon, where she'll sit on my chest, smoosh her face against mine, and purr until we both fall asleep = Purry McFurry.

Minnie moo

Slow progress

Sylvain came home from work and we sat on either end of the couch, our respective feet up, chatting about our days.

"How is your toe going?" he asked.

We both stare at my toe, which I proceed to wriggle for the first time since the operation.

"Getting much better, I think!" I exclaim with glee, and continue to wriggle my toe happily.

Then, out of nowhere, like a bolt of lightning, Symphony pounces on it.

I think we have gone backwards about half a day in terms of recovery.

I really should know better.


I had a wee bit of an operation this week.

Actually, it turned out to be a bigger deal than we initially thought, so I'm off work for a couple of weeks whilst I recover.

Whilst my big toe recovers, actually.

It's a bit strange, being off work for all this time, waiting for my big toe to get better. It sounds rather ridiculous when you put it like that.

So anyway, the operation was on Wednesday. General anaesthetic and all that. Fun and games and adventures in French hospitals which will surely be recounted on future episodes of the podcast.

Fast forward through a painful night (once the local anaesthetic they put on my foot wore off, I understood why the doctor thought it was hilarious that I argued about how much time off he was giving me) to Thursday morning.

I can't actually really walk right now, so at around 10am, I figure out how to shuffle/crawl/drag myself out from the bedroom to the lounge room and onto the couch, where I settle in to watch endless episodes of Gossip Girl, Mad Men, Dexter and Ugly Betty, as I drift in and out of sleep.

Then Symphony goes and vomits.

In the furtherest place possible yet still visible from the couch.

I lie on the couch, staring at the puddle of cat vomit, wondering if I can manage to hold out until Sylvain gets home from work and cleans it up.

Then I start feeling guilty about the fact that he's already put up with a lot of my drama already (ie. listening to me chatter incessantly whilst we wait for the surgeon who is 3 hours late in starting my procedure), AND the fact that the puddle of vomit is right at the front door and in Prime First Foot Position for walking in the door.

Eventually the guilt gets the better of me and (pausing Gossip Girl, of course, you can't imagine that I would let a moment of that drama unfold without being in front of the computer screen?) I drag myself around and clean up the messs.

Clearly she didn't get the memo about me Not Being Able To Walk At The Moment.

Or maybe she did, and she's just chosen my weakest moment to get back at me for buying Light Cat Food.

(Note: it's taken me a good few hours to write this entry, as I drift in and out of the cloudy-headedness that goes with happy pills! yay for the happy pills!)

Coffee bean conundrums

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My dad and my father-in-law are both recovering, slowly but surely (and thankyou to everyone who sent us their positive thoughts).

Sylvain has gone down to spend some time with his parents, to help out a little whilst his dad is getting better.

And since he's over 5 hours away, I've been wondering why the chocolate-covered coffee beans have still been disappearing. There were about 20 of them in the bowl on the table when he left and I know I haven't eaten any.

Tonight I walked into the lounge room to see Symphony on the table, batting the last chocolate-covered coffee bean out of the bowl and onto the floor. In a blink of an eye, she had chased it underneath the chair and was strolling nonchalantly into the kitchen, her tail in the air.

I'm a little scared to look under the chair now.

But if I don't do something about it, the cleaning lady is going to find them tomorrow and wonder what we've been doing.

Although that's probably not the first strange thing she would have found under our lounge room furniture...

Mini-m&ms... pipe-cleaners... confetti... dirty socks...

Why having a cat means you have (relatively) clean feet

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I woke up at 4.13 this morning. 

I tossed and turned until 5.01, when I finally gave up, drifted into the kitchen and had a glass of water, checked my email, and was about to see what was happening on Facebook at that hour of the morning when I heard creaks from the bedroom. I worried that Sylvain was getting up to check on me, but it turned out to be Symphony who thought that 5.01 in the morning was the best time for cuddles.

So we went back to bed, where she lay on my chest, her nose against my cheek, purring. But of course, just as I started to drift off to sleep, she wandered off to sit on the buffet, where she began chewing on plastic (her code for, "I'm so hungry and poor and neglected that the only thing I have to eat is this plastic which I will chew on as loudly as I can to wake them up and maybe they'll think about feeding poor 'lil old me"). So I rolled out of bed and stumbled into the kitchen, where I poured croquettes, one by one, into her food bowl, aided by the surprisingly bright blue light of my computer mouse in the room next door. 

Sadly, when I stumbled out again a few minutes later, having been roused by a suspiciously familiar vomiting noise, the pulsating blue light of the computer mouse didn't guide me in the right direction and I stepped right in the puddle of cat vomit.

5.42 and I was back in bed. 

With clean feet.



Did you know that a cat physically can't walk when you tie something around its stomach?

That was our lesson for Wednesday.

Symphony kept trying to pull her stitches out following her "operation", (obviously not advised), and despite attempts at reasoning with her, she studiously ignored us and kept trying to pull them out. So we turned to the vet for help, who told us that a "conehead" like you see for dogs is absolutely out of the question for cats (who apparently are too traumatised by it), and told us that we needed to put a bandage on to stop her from chewing on the stitches.

I trotted off to work, confident that Sylvain could take care of it, but -20 euros of bandage and one very cranky cat later- he rang me and said, "I'm going to take her to the vet and get her to do it". And so, Symphony was essentially mummified.

The vet warned Sylvain that when he got her home she would have a lot of difficulties walking around for awhile, but "difficulties" was apparently an understatement. She literally walked two steps, fell down, miaowed in anger, walked another step, fell down, then threw a full-on temper tantrum at Sylvain. It took the poor little sweetie a good hour to be able to walk properly again.

Who knew? I've never been the type to tie things to my cat, but now I know what is apparently a well-documented fact (at least according to some of my colleagues): that you can't tie something around a cats stomach unless you want them to flop around like marionnettes and be unable to walk for an hour.

So, she's been stomping around like a cranky puss for the last 24 hours, trying to chew off her bandage and miaowing randomly at us. I confess, it's been a little amusing, watching her alternate between her little temper tantrums over this thing wrapped around her tummy and getting distracted into chasing moths that sneak in when we open the windows to let out the smoke from cooking sausages for dinner.

One of the things that Sylvain was worried about following her "operation", was that she might have a personality change. That she might mellow out a bit too much, that she might be a different cat.

But if the evidence of her continued stubborn-headedness in persisting to chew at her bandage, hissy fits and insatiably playful episodes with moths are anything to go by, I think he shouldn't have been worried. Symphony is Symphony, and that's that.

Creatures of Habit


Whilst Sylvain is away, I find myself the Sole Attention-Giver to Her Royal Highness Symphony.

Given that cats are Creatures of Habit, the fact that Sylvain is not here throws the Young Lady's Daily Routine out of whack. And who is left to pick up the slack?

Normally, Sylvain wakes up slowly, moseying out to the kitchen after at least ten minutes of contemplating getting out of bed. In which time Symphony profits entirely from his barely-moving state and gets copious amounts of cuddles. I, on the other hand, jump out of bed as soon as the alarm goes off (if I lie in bed, I'll fall back asleep) and head straight to the bathroom for my face-washing, hair-brushing, getting-ready-for-work routine. Given that I set my alarm for the Latest Possible Time, leaving no margin for error, there is no time in my morning for unscheduled ten-minute hugs.

Symphony has been completely destabilised by all of this over the last two weeks and sits by the bathroom sink, staring at me pitifully as if she is suffering from lack of attention, with the result that I can't help but pick her up and hug her and then end up missing out on breakfast because goodness knows I can't possibly miss my train (because we all know how that ends up).

When things are going As Normal, at night she typically comes and sits on my chest whilst I read. She'll spend a few more minutes there, purring, after the light goes out, then will proceed to the side table where she will drink out of her glass of water (it used to be my glass of water, five years ago, but she appropriated it and after a Long Battle, it's still hers and so I keep a bottle of water beside the bed instead), then she'll sit there for a minute until she burps, then she'll go and eat some crunch, then she'll spend a minute digging in her litter box, and once all that is done, and ONLY once all that is done, will she finally come back to bed. She will nuzzle underneath the covers and place herself firmly between my legs (a destabilising habit, if one is not expecting it, and is something we have to warn overnight guests about). She'll generally start off the night with me, but because I wriggle too much in my sleep, she tends to finish it off with Sylvain.

Of course, since Sylvain has been here, I've been the one bearing the brunt of all her night-time habits. Mix my nocturnal wriggling with her constant twitching and purring and scratching and licking and burping and sniffing and it makes for an Aussie Lass Who Hasn't Had Much Sleep Lately.

I'm looking forward to when Sylvain gets back.

Because both Her Royal Highness and I would like to get back to our normal routine. And I'm sure he does too.


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I still feel like I want to curl up for a nap at 4pm in the afternoon, and shudder at the darkness when I open the curtains at 7.30am, but we are slowly getting back into the rhythm of things.

Symphony is taking our return in her stride. Not that she missed us.

When we arrived home on Tuesday morning, I opened the door, expecting to see Symphony bounding towards me in excitement. But there was nothing, not a peep.

I suffered a mild panic attack as I raced around the apartment trying to find her, but Sylvain reassured me, "perhaps she's at the neighbours house". Hearing the radio through the door (it was 7.30am after all), we knocked on their front door, waited a few moments, and watched it open slowly - and there were our neighbours in their pajamas, and Symphony walking out of their bedroom, blinking.

She's been cheating on us.

Before we left for Australia, we gave our keys to the neighbours. We had hired a petsitter to drop in every few days to feed and play with Symphony, but the neighbours offered to supplement this by dropping in to see her from time to time, and taking her over to their apartment occasionally to play with her. They did mention something about letting her sleep at their place too, if we wanted, but we quickly put a stop to that idea by telling them that Symphony had rather bad sleeping habits (she sleeps between legs, and snores) - but it seems it was to no avail. According to our neighbour, she's spent the last month sleeping over at their place, and they've been delighted to have her.

She does seem quite happy to be back in the same old routine, however. I'm just thankful that they haven't taught her any bad habits, like feeding her at the table or something like that.

It's just slightly destabilising to think she's been sleeping between the legs of others. She already did it to every guest who has ever slept here, but now she's apartment-hopping to boot!


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