Rest In Peace sweet Norman, our wondrous bonny boy.
Dear Reader, So Autumn has arrived again – how on earth did that happen?
Anyway, we cats make the most of all of the seasons – and the changing of the seasons is nature’s way of reminding humans and cats alike to follow our instincts, slow down and take things just that bit easier.
With that in mind, I, as September Cat of the month, have made….with the help of my trusted aid Ed…. an instructional video.
So please forget those pesky winds ruffling your coat and the dark nights drawing in. Just put your paws/feet (delete as appropriate) up and enjoy a Masterclass in pure relaxation.
Cat of the Month ~ September 2015
Norman x x x
p.s. I’m sure this will be a great watch for you folks who don’t have a cat too. You’ll get to see just all the fun that you are missing.
In this First World War Centenary year I would like to draw attention to the animals that served alongside the brave men and women who gave us all our freedom today.
I have it on good authority that a 16 million-strong army of animals including mules, donkeys, cats and even camels was deployed in our battle of the 1914 to 1918 conflict – with the lives of nine million of these fellow creatures tragically cut short. Here is my humble nod to these brave comrades! I salute you all!
Wishing you all A Moggy Christmas and a Peaceful and Happy New Year 2015!
Love and Purrs,
aboard the H.M.S. Encounter 1916.
the Croix de Guerre medal
Probably the most famous of all the carrier/homing pigeons that were employed in both WW I and WW II (as vital communication links) was the one named ‘Cher Ami’, two French words meaning “Dear Friend”. Cher Ami spent several months on the front lines during the Fall of 1918. He flew 12 important missions to deliver messages. Perhaps the most important was the message he carried on October 4, 1918 when he survived shrapnel injuries to deliver a message that saved members of the “Lost Battalion”…. Read the full story at the Home of Heroes (homeofheroes.com)
The horses had to endure the same hardships as the soldiers
throughout the conflict!
The now famous pitbull Seargent Stubby took part in seventeen battles and was nearly killed by nerve gas. He also captured a german spy. He is said to be the most decorated war dog of World War I and the only dog to be nominated for rank and then promoted to sergeant through combat.
Another famous WW1 message carrying dog was ‘Rags’, a mixed breed terrier who was born in Paris. During his service he was bombed and gassed like the soldiers around him. He went on to save the life of many of his fellow soldiers.
There are at least two war memorials to these brave animals. This one is in Hyde Park London
This monument is a powerful and moving tribute to all the animals that served, suffered and died alongside the British, Commonwealth and Allied forces in the wars and conflicts of the 20th century. The memorial was unveiled by HRH The Princess Royal in November 2004, the 90th anniversary of the start of World War I.
Cat Bird of the Month ~ November 2014
This daring bird had the cheek to nestle down on Norman’s patch and proceed to tuck in to his elevenses. I dissuaded the said cat from going out to defend his turf on this occasion. Instead we watched from the safety of an open window.
The video is a bit gorey and not for the squeamish … He’s a lovely adult male bird though (looked him up on R.S.P.B website).
We are struck by the strength of his legs when he is pulling the prey apart and by the bright orange colouration on his chest.
At last the lovely sunny weather has arrived, but you wouldnt know it cause it was coming down in buckets all day today…. I know this, because I have been sitting here in the snug window, watching the aforementioned rain whilst (really) watching out out for a certain big white moggy who wont take the hint!
The reason I’m stuck here in limbo, incarceration, quarantine (call it what you will) is on account of my claw fight with a neighboorhood imposter who had the gall to repeatedly step on my patch of turf. Over the past three weeks I’ve been spraying and spraying to warn him to stay away,but ohhh noo, he didn’t take heed did he ….well this show down had been on the scratching post for months.
It all came to a head Friday last. And now, here I am like the prisoner in Behan’s jail, trussed up in this stupid headdress, cum bonnet so kindly loaned me by the Vet. And since I’ve got this extra time on my paws I thought I’d relate to you, dear reader, the story.
I lay dozing in the shade of my favourite pine when I saw, out the corner of my eye (as y’do), strolling casually down MY garden path, a big white beast of a moggy. To cut a long story short, I kept watching and he (the upstart!) began to nestle down in MY borage patch.
Well, I jumped up and trotted over for a closer peek and then when he saw me the ‘I’m not budging’ standoff began.
Twenty minutes later, we’re still stood staring there, growling, muewing and hissing at each other. ‘White Body Black Tail’ as I like to call him, but my humans think of as ‘Patch’ (for obvious, unimaginative reasons), was slowly realising the error of his ways…
The final straw was his lunge at my face as he passed me, I turned swiftly and ran down the path in chase, but he was as fast as me and made the six foot fence in ten bounds. The Imposter was defeated but I was in one of those frisky moods, having been forced into spending the whole day in the garret…. and I followed upwards just for the heck of it. My sharp claws digging in to the old wood to help my climb…. Sadly, I then slipped (hope no one was watching) and (it tuns out) ripped a claw off in the process. Oh the pain… I strolled back home proud but bowed.
‘White Body Black Tail’ was gone but I had paid the price. For my sins the kindly (not) Vetinary Nurse presented me with a spring bonnet and slipped it on without my consent. Oh how I absolutely loathe it. The damn wound is itching like crazy and I can’t now get to lick it better.
[ Mini heatwave here in England folks, hot on the heels of the wettest drought on record ( the day after the drought was announced it rained for a month and a half)! , Ed]
I have been lolling in the shade today making a few feline observations on life, the Universe and the humans in our care which I thought I would share with you.
Not two days ago my Tom human had his fleecy jacket on, zipped tight against the cold, but today he has exposed those pale, stubbly legs to the unexpected sunshine and, I’m sorry to say, it’s not a pretty sight at all, although he doesn’t seem to think so (bless).
However there are other interesting things to look at to gladden a cat’s eye. There are bluebells swaying in the breeze and bees buzzing in the Borage, (if only I could raise the energy to give them a quick bat). Birds are busying themselves all over the sky, each one with its own unique song (and most delicious they all sound too).
The humans are caught up in watching The Chelsea Flower Show and dreaming of having a calm, ordered Japanese garden with trickling streams and carefully clipped bonsai trees. But flower shows and the humans in my care, have seemed to miss the glaringly obvious – that whether you have a rustic French jardin, a manicured Elizabethan knot garden or a yard with a few pots of cheery geraniums, the most beautiful thing of all for the heart to see is a happy cat mooching around and bringing the garden to life with its inquisitive, furry, fabulous ways. So please let me suggest, to any readers who have a garden but no puss, that a visit to your local cattery or cat rescue center would bring even more sunshine into your life and complete the little patch of earth you call home perfectly, plus they will help with the digging in their own way, honestly!
Love and purrs to all,
Norman. x x
Seasons Greetings reader, whether you are cat, kitten, creature or human.
I hope you had a lovely calm and peaceful year and have an equally peaceful 2012.
Ahem miaow. I myself had a fairly uneventful time of it except for my run in with a veterinary dentist who had the audacity and wherewithal to extract my left rear molar without my consent (and very painful it was too). That, and of course my enforced summer stay in the local cattery (always a low point of my year)! Other than that I had a marvelous time, mainly sleeping but occasionally getting up to chase a bird, mouse or small human around the garden.
Enough of me already! This season of the year is (as always) a time for us all, to think about one another, and for yours truly this means meditating on the sad plight of the tigers, lions and all the human hunted cats of this world. Also, consider (as I do) the unwanted street cats and the waifs & strays of our cities and the hardships they have to endure.
So I urge you dear reader to, reassess your priorities and to visit your local cat (or dog) sanctuary in the new year and, if you can, fit another ball of fur, claws and teeth (ouch) and sheer feline/canine delight into your clan, please do so.
As for our bigger cousins, let those with the means, help as much as they can. For the rest of us we will have to pray that the hunters realise the error of their ways in this coming year.
A very merry Christmas, good health and kind fortune to you all,
All my love, sincerely,
x x x