Sunday, September 13, 2015

This Cat...

Everything in the yard is lip-smacking good.
She comes when I call her--from wherever she is exploring the garden--in a straight up gallop across the yard to me.  She rubs on my ankles and flops over and rolls in the dirt.  That gallop is just about heart-melting.  She is so happy to see me.  Oh, every time it sparks sheer joy in my heart.  We do this several time a day, but always when I wake up in the morning and when I get home from work at night.
Ginger is a cat with "elevator butt," in that she just can't help but raise it up and then flop over dramatically when the base of her tail is scratched.  I gather that it feels so good that she just can't control herself.
(I should say she, almost always comes running.  Sometimes she slowly sidles, sniffing things along the way.  Sometimes she makes it to the patio, realizes I am about to bring her inside, and starts to slink off into the yard again.  Sometimes she is so intently stalking the earthworms that I am not sure a train whistle would get her attention.  But, nine times out of ten, she comes cheerfully running when called.)
So...so..sleepy.
Now that she goes outside we have a new morning routine.  Matt wakes an hour before me and lets her out into the yard.  When I get up I say my good mornings to Matt and then go out to the patio and call my kitty who comes racing to greet me.  Sometimes I don't have to even go outside and she is already trotting across the patio to the backdoor.  Matt is convinced she has super-sonic Beth-related hearing--that she is cued in for the sound of my voice, that she can tell the difference between my footsteps and Matt's footsteps.    Ginger still plays favorites.  She doesn't even try to hide it.
Ginger thinks the piles of pulled weeds/grass are just for her to play with, eat, and roll around on.  Here she got so excited about it she started batting the leaves of the sun chokes, too.  She is so playful.
When she wants me to come outside with her she will wait on the patio looking back over her shoulder at me.  If I don't come she will urge me on with a couple small, clipped meows--almost like a little bird's chirp.  If this goes on too long she starts raising her voice insistently.  I usually am a sucker for it and just go spend five minutes outside.  Same goes for when she wants me to feed her.  Matt can't do the job alone, by her assessment.  It takes both of us.  She will wait halfway down the stairs, looking back at me, until I come along, too.  She really prefers to be petted while she eats, ideally by the both of us.
I don't know why I am her favorite.  Matt never does stuff like this to her...
I was having a hard time sleeping, arthritis-wise, for much of the last few months.  When I would get up in the night and move to the livingroom chair or sofa she would get up from her window bed in the corner and jump up on my lap, sleeping with me the rest of the night through.  It was really sweet and really the only silver lining to my sleep problems.  She made it better.  And she isn't really even a cuddly cat, usually, one who almost never sleeps with us.  It was like she could tell I needed her company and comfort.  (And now I've been on these all-natural, turmeric-based pain pills for two or three weeks and have actually woken up without any pain for several mornings now!  Huzzah!)
I brought this wooden box home from my cousin's wedding after learning it was destined for the "burn pile."  Ginger loves it.  She can rub on all the corners and really dig in with her claws when sitting on top.
We've almost got her trained to jump.  We've got a few trick routines we run through, including Ginger standing on her hind legs on the kitchen stool, reaching halfway up the front of the fridge, and finding treats hidden on the tops of the low cupboard doors.  I am working on making her my "circus" kitty!  Since treats are involved she is happy to play along for my amusement.  In fact, now that she knows I like it she does her tricks without prompting, just in case I might have a secret treat up my sleeve for her.
A Carrot Patch Fortress.  When she is laying down in there, between the rows of tall carrot tops, she is invisible.
She pads around behind us in the garden.  She's made enough peace with the garden hose that she can get in lots of petting/dirt rolling while Matt waters the garden.  She has forts in the raspberry patch, pepper patch, and under the wheelbarrow by the compost pile.  She also enjoys the barnwood box, the papasan chair, and Mary Ann's old wooden bench.  She is not above napping on the picnic table either.  That is where she perches when she wants to come back in for a nibble or a bathroom break.  She sits on the picnic table and waits for us to notice her.  She still comes inside to go to the bathroom.  Fine by us, keep it out of the tomatoes, I say.
Ginger has three major hobbies, I'd say.  They are, in no particular order, shredding paper, hunting grasshoppers, mice, and other small critters, and napping in the sunshine.
Seriously.  I love this cat so much its crazy.  I never thought I'd love a cat more than Holly (may she rest in peace and forgive me!), but somehow it has happened.  Thank heavens for the joy and love of cats.  Especially this Ginger kitty.
And she's off!

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