Tuesday, December 1, 2015
Down the rabbit hole.
This is Eleia - I gave her this name after Princess Leah of Star Wars fame. She is intrepid. She is terribly curious.
She makes me crazy.
I love her despite this - she always greets me with some sort of cat noise, a meow, a chrrp, a neow? or bleah - you can almost see her sticking her tongue out at me as she turns her back and runs away, or saunters out of sight.
And out of sight is often where she is...
She can find her way under couches, chairs, beds, blankets, duvets and pillows. Or down holes. Holes that I am often not aware exist.
Like the time she was able to open the door to the pump room - the one for the well, not the municipal water. I couldn't find her. Had I left the front door open and then shut it? Was she stranded outside somewhere? Was she under the covers in the third bedroom? Or behind all the stuff that was jammed into the closet there, including a rug I couldn't move if my life depended on it? Was she caught somewhere?
I called her upstairs, outside and finally getting no response nor any sign of her, I went back downstairs again to the sitting room and noticed the door open to the pump room. I squeezed inside.
Called her. Looked around. Needed a flashlight.
Went upstairs and got a flashlight and came back down. Then I yelled for her again.
Meooooooowwwww. A loud noisy cry. Was it a cry? or just an angry whadyawant kind of kitty-snarl...
Much later I was to figure the latter.
Went back into the little tiny room under the stairs that lead from the side door downstairs. Looked under the stairs and behind the pump and a huge water container there. No cat. No anything - no holes she could get through. Hmmmmm.
Then I turned around and was horrified.
A big gap between the drywall and the foundation wall of concrete block, was revealed in the flashlight beam. I shot the light down the gap. It was dark and blocked by a moisture barrier. It of course was falling inward into the space between the foundation wall and the drywall...how? where? what was I going to do, Would I have to cut the drywall to get her out.
I got a broomstick and held the offending moisture barrier back, shining the light down the cavity.
There - looking at the ceiling, half way down what appeared to be a narrow corridor was THE CAT.
I called her. She glanced my way and with a sort of hitch turned around in the narrow space and made for the end of the road.
She obviously wasn't stuck but could I persuade her to come out?
Temptations... (no this is not an ad for Temptations but it might as well be.)
I ran upstairs grabbed the bag and was down in a heart beat. Squeezed back through the door and zut alors - there she was in the opening. I started to put down the treats and she turned and ran. I followed her with the flashlight - right to the end of the 35 - 40 foot wall... the brat!
So I left Temptations on the floor just outside the opening, shook the bag, called "treats" down the corridor and stood back waiting.
She came back, focused on the treats, I grabbed her and....
So I put something down to prevent her opening that door, a tote full of books.
Then we installed a gas fireplace. It is like my old wood stove and lovely to look at. They had to cut holes in the ceiling and a big hole for the gas line behind the stove.
Bill and his friend Philip lifted the carpet to get rid of it after we had the deluge.
They put the table on which some day I am going to do art work along the wall close to the stove....
But the hole was blocked with plastic and pink insulation. .
And I couldn't find her.
Bedroom, outside, third bedroom, under tables, in the furnace room? no the door was firmly closed. Back in the sitting room I yelled "Eleia!"
Mroowowowow. (haha here I am).
I looked more closely at the hole behind the stove. Yup. She'd pulled down the plastic and pushed aside the insulation. Down the rabbit hole. AGAIN. I opened the door to the pump room. She sauntered out... yes, literally sauntered. Tail waving. ARGH!
I stuffed two pillows firmly in the hole. They just fit. And went upstairs with her following me to get supper.
Bedtime. Where the dickens is that cat...
Downstairs once more I trudge. Thinking again surely not.
The pillows are pulled aside, the gas line bent to one side slightly OMG as they write on FaceBook. No smell of gas but obviously she's down there AGAIN. My heart is pounding but with fury this time. I open the door to the pump room and place some Temptations in the opening and she comes out - I quickly shut the door and throw a pillow at her I'm so cross. When I can finally catch her I take her upstairs and barely keep myself from throwing her violently into the office slamming the door.
Then I get some duct tape. Bright orange.
So my intrepid no longer could jump on the stove and go down the hole.I also piled chairs on the table and cedar chest and stuck other things in the way of her jumping up. They didn't stop her but the duct tape kept the rabbit hole safe.
The painters are here today. The holes in the sitting room have been sealed with new drywall, and the pump room door is getting a lock put on it today.
Eleia? Well she's sleeping off a night of watching all the night-time goings-on from the top of the piano. If it wasn't raining I'm sure she'd sneak outside when the painters got in or out, and explore somewhere outside.
But from now until spring when she'll want to be out snoozing on the deck or exploring my gardens (or the neighbours' gardens) I won't be looking down rabbit holes for her... I hope.