Category Archives: CHOCOLAT: MY CAT

MY NEW BOOK-THEMED BLOG


 

I subscribe to a number of WordPress blogs about books and reading,  and after enjoying them for several years, it finally dawned on me that maybe I should identify the book-related material in my  own blog  and start a second blog, devoted to books. Ping! Lightbulb flash.

So: I’m happy to announce the launch of THE BOOKSMITH BLOG  http://thebooksmithblog.wordpress.com .  Thanks again to WordPress.com for their blogging platform.  They really do make blogging easy for  wrinkly writers like yours truly. I hope you visit my new blog, even if you’re not an official Booknut like me.  If all else fails, it has quite a funny header pic.

Despatches from Timbuktu  will continue to act as my electronic soapbox where I comment on modern life, South Africa, social trends, my travels around the Western Cape and Cape Town, plus  anything else that might  attract my butterfly attention.

And not to overlook the fact that Despatches From Timbuktu  is  the one place where Chocolat can express her displeasure at my poor performance as her Personal Assistant. Sorry, Chocolat,  but you have no idea how much work building a new blog entails . I promise there’ll be fish for supper tonight. How’s that for an apology?

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MARCH 2017 UPDATE FROM CHOCOLAT


 

 

I am happy to report that I am now able to resume my normal routine of sunbathing and napping. My Personal Assistant is back on duty and has stopped lounging around on our bed. About time too.

However I must admit the Junior Substitute  PA did a good job. My meal schedule was uninterrupted and she certainly brushed me more often than my PA does.

All in all, it’s a relief to be back  to my  usual routine. Nurse-maiding a human is terribly time consuming and frankly, not my designated occupation.  I’ll leave you now, I have a date with my favourite cushion on my veranda chair.

 

(Thanks to Regine Lord for her superb pics; all pics copyright RL)

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A FEBRUARY 2017 UPDATE FROM CHOCOLAT


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I have to report  that my Personal Assistant is not performing her duties as per her job description i.e. undivided attention to me, 24/7.

It seems that she is going to be absent from our home for 48 hours, and when she returns, will require bed rest. I have never understood why humans can’t be like us .To remedy digestive upsets, or troublesome hairballs, we  eat grass, which solves the problem.  Aches and pains are cured by prolonged sunbathing. Wounds respond well to gentle licking. And sleep, as we all know, cures everything. Which is why I’m always working on my zed’s.  Why can’t humans be more like us?

I will be supportive, of course, cuddling up to her in bed, and purring gently. She seems to like that. So until you hear from us again you can rest assured I’m keeping a close eye on her and will update you later.  Chocolat.

P.S. Don’t you think the pink blanket sets my fur off to best advantage? I feel the contrast enhances my appearance.  Always important to look one’s best, don’t you agree?

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*(JAP) IT’S OFFICIAL – I’M BATTY!


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*(Just a Paragraph:  when I’m short of time and/or inspiration, I keep my blog ticking over with ‘just a paragraph’: random thoughts, reflections, comments, ideas … little snippets)

 

Recently I filled in one of those Facebook quiz thingys, to find out my animal equivalent . I slogged through the questions and waited with bated breath. Bet I‘m one of the cats, I thought. I fancy being a leopard – or  a Margay ?  Hah! Wrong. Very wrong.  The most unlikely creature: according to their algorithm, I’m a – wait for it – I’m a BAT.  Noooooo. Uh-uh. No way. It’s the polar opposite of my everyday life. I’m the irritating person who rises at 05.00 (nagged  by my cat),  and leaps into action, with a smile on my dial, headed towards the day’s To-Do-List.  Everybody hates me. Must admit, I can see why. In short, I am a morning person, de luxe. As the sun goes down, so do I. A night-time person I am not.  Flitting around at all hours has no appeal whatsoever. Never mind the insect diet and the unsavoury blood-sucking aspect –  yuck.  Either I ticked the wrong box in a short-sighted moment, or else they need to dust off their algorithms. At heart,  I’m  still a leopard!

 

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THE WEDDING VENUE CATS


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Chocolat calling. Yes, AGAIN.  Twice in twelve days. I know it’s a bit much, but you’ll just have to put up with me. I have to get this off my chest. Actually, my whiskers are severely ruffled, I don’t mind admitting it.

Ever since my Personal Assistant  returned from The Wedding, she’s been burbling on about Fuggly the FarSide Farm cat. Apparently this Fuggly person made a big impact on my PA. I can’t think why. Here’s Fuggly  lounging on a Persian carpet at FarSide Farm.  Kindly note, she’s a portly person, wearing  common old tabby stripes.  No comparison to my sleek lines and rich brown coat. The prettiest thing in the picture is the magnificent Oriental carpet, don’t you agree?

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It seems that Fuggly was rescued by Noble Hero, Graham, when she was an abandoned kitten.  NHG was driving way out in the sticks. Luckily the dirt road forced him to drive slowly, otherwise he would have driven over the scrap of a kitten lying in the road – burnt, dehydrated, flea infested, starving, a whisker away from death. NHG picked her up, nursed her back to life at his FarSide Farm, where she now supervises weddings. As you can see from the picture below she is checking out the table decorations and keeping a close eye on the preparations.

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Due to her exacting standards, the tables looked very striking once they were completed.

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Fuggly didn’t stay for the wedding  reception. She doesn’t care for loud music and dancing feet. Little cats tend to get trodden on, in all the excitement. However, Gulliver, a very grand person also in residence at FarSide Farm, graced the festivities with his presence, by lounging just below the bridal couple’s central table. Unfortunately my PA didn’t take a picture of him, so she’s begged a studio portrait from Olivia, the unflappable FarSide Farm Events Manager.

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Gulliver likes to try and lord it over Fuggly, because he’s an Abyssinian , and I must say, as another purebred person, I agree with his attitude.

I don’t t understand why my PA keeps on talking about Fuggly and Gulliver. I mean, she has me in residence, 24/7, devotedly providing hot-water bottle services under the duvet nightly; singing her awake on cold winter mornings; bringing gifts of mice, birds, grasshoppers, lizards.  Really, there’s just no pleasing humans! I think I shall retire to my cat cave and sulk.

P.S. If you’re wondering why my picture at the top is so big? of course it is. I’m the most important person. Surely I don’t have to remind you ?

 

 

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A WINTER BULLETIN FROM THE CAT’S CAVE


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Chocolat here.  I’m speaking to you from my cat’s cave. See pic above. I’m in there, trust me, it’s the warmest place. Because my fur is such a rich, dark brown, you can’t see too much of me – maybe my two eyes, and not much else.  Human eyesight is so feeble, compared to mine. I’m perched on my warmed grain-bag . I’ve trained my Personal Assistant to warm it in the microwave during winter. Because my fur is so short, I feel the cold dreadfully.

Since returning from The Wedding my PA hasn’t been very productive. She seems to spend hours with her nose in a book. I have never understood humans’ fascination with those things. I think they’re terribly dull, they don’t move, or run like lizards and mice. I can’t see the point of them. Anyway, my meals are still arriving at regular intervals, as well as early morning milk, so that’s the main thing.

I’m in good health and spirits as you can see from my pic at the end of this post. No doubt my PA will return to her keyboard. Perhaps when it’s warmer? Watch this space – Chocolat.

 

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*AFK/FAMILY WEDDINGS


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I’m going to be AFK, en route to another Family Wedding. A juicy topic for blogging.

Who gets invited?  Distant family  members who only appear at Weddings and Funerals, and are mortally offended  if they’re not invited.   Then there’s the gossip about those who were/were not invited, the whispers about long-standing feuds – excursion into tribal history. Most of it unedifying, all of it fascinating.  Families!

And then the vexed question of What to Wear?   As the matriarch of my small family, I cannot lurk in the back pew in a comfy pair of trousers and my Skechers .  So I’ve been combing the shops for something – anything ! – that doesn’t cost the earth, and which I will be able to wear on other occasions. My clothes have to march bravely on for years and years.

Additionally, I don’t lead a life filled with dressy occasions, so I don’t have anything in the cupboard to fall back on.  Apart from my beautiful simple white jacket, made for me by my dear Mother at least 17 years ago. It gets hauled out for infrequent grand events. Because its a polyester linen it washes like a dream – thanks Mum – I wish I’d asked you to make me a black one, and a navy one, and perhaps a yellow one too. Alas: too late now.

So:  the cat-sitter is organised, the suitcase is semi-packed. I’m scurrying around like a demented meerkat tying up loose ends, crossing off lists, adding diary notes –  aaarrgggh … I’m my own worst enemy – too many projects, despite my 2016 resolution not to be so busy.  Note to self:  After Easter – say ‘NO’, and relax on the couch with your tapestry.  Okay. Will do.

Meanwhile, dear readers  Chocolat is holding the fort, terrifying the house-sitter while I gad around the Republic.  Toodle-ooo!

 

*afk –  Absent from keyboard

 

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WINTER WOES  – from Chocolat

 

Chocolat the Literary Critic

It’s been terribly cold this winter. With my short coat, I feel the cold dreadfully. Fortunately my house catches the winter afternoon sun, so when possible I sunbathe on the bed in the spare bedroom. As you can see from the photo, its fairly comfortable.

 

In the mornings, if the weather is dry and the sun comes out, I relax on the patio table, soaking up the rays. Its sheltered from the wind, always a good thing on a Cape winter day.

My attendant has been quite good this year, heating up my personal hot-cushion and putting it into my Cat House (why are you sniggering? It’s a standard blue foam igloo. Hah! Humans!)She also provides under-cat-heating, in the evenings, while she watches her moving pictures. She has her uses.

At night I make a beeline for our winter feather duvet, which is lovely, if my attendant remembers to switch on the electric blanket. Life can be hard for a cat.

 

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FRATERNISING WITH THE ENEMY!


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During my recent Family Visit to Pretoria I was besieged by four dogs, and as you can see above, I succumbed to Binky’s pathetic pop-eyed pleas. Binky is an unlikely  dachshund-pekingese cross. Everything about her is dachsie, but she has the peke face. She lives up to her heritage and is a lapdog, in every sense of the word.

Now that I’m back home and pacifying Chocolat after her eleven day sojourn in that place, I have decided not to show this pic to Chocolat. I don’t think it would be very tactful.

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INTER-SPECIES CONFUSION


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Chocolat reporting:

My Human continues to baffle me. She brought home something and I’m supposed to do something with it, but I don’t know what. The thing has two ears and two eyes, but no legs. Yet it moves. When it moves it makes a whirring, clicking sound. But it only moves on the tiled floor in our hall. Also, it has no smell, which is very strange. And when I speak to it, it never responds. I don’t know what to make of it, or what I’m supposed to do.  My Human keeps pushing the thing towards me – but why?

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The Human,(complaining) : A perfectly good clockwork mouse – I thought Chocolat would love it. After all she brings home mice every single week. Granted, they are brown with two yellow back stripes and they are self-propelled and provide endless fun and entertainment for my energetic cat, but still!  Cats !!!! *&^%!!

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