by Diana Studer
- gardening for biodiversity
in Cape Town, South Africa
When we first saw Thomas at the SPCA in November a year ago, he laid back his ears. Don't TOUCH me!! He hid as best he could in a dark and sheltered corner.
Slender young rescue cat, perhaps a year old in December? VERY shy. Flees from shriek of horror A People!! When we opened his travelling cage he shot into the box in the corner. It took us five weeks before he stopped ducking his head away from our hands.
January he is exploring his new territory and meeting the neighbours. We keep that gate closed overnight, and the sound of the gate creaking open or shut, works like a charm to lure him from the depths of the garden.
February young Thomas Gray does what we missed - helps us in the garden. The Ungardener was working on Froggy Pond. Thomas discovered that he can leap up onto the post of the boundary wall, from where he can chat to little Ginger next door. Hadedas are about his size, but, that beak! He did try very hard to make friends with little old lady Aragon, but she was too old for new friends.
In April he is our first cat to enjoy TV with the Ungardener. Shall we watch 50/50 (a nature programme)? Himself enjoys the sun, and that tail needs its own space. Lapping water is hard work. He reclines like a Roman emperor and leaves the kitchen under water when he is done.
August winter ruff. He has exploded into a cat three times the size at least. Soft cashmere fur snags on my gardener's hands.
Thomas much appreciates fully glazed doors, where he can gaze in fascination at a pair of sparrows twittering up on the trellis. He doesn't try to walk thru the door.
October a comfortable evening on his matching Jacob rug (bought on a holiday in Yorkshire years ago)
November flowers Scabiosa entertains Thomas, tappy tappy, biff biff, and another one bites the dust. As a focal point on the table I have a potted Streptocarpus. Thomas has decreed there will be NO Streptocarpus on my patch!
Thirsty cat has four watering cans lined up. It is hard work to feed that Shetland pony (when he gallops past the window) The Ungardener's 5 AM Oy you, breakfast!! - is not in my job description. I prefer the midnight snack task.
To my readers - a very happy Christmas!
For us with carols and a beach walk.
December Froggy Pond fits all sizes of creature including Thomas who LOVES fishing. I think our Thomas, SPCA special, parents unknown, might be part Turkish Van cat (large, fluffy, LOVES playing with water) We flew over Lake Van.
Yesterday Thomas caught the tail. Today I rescued the lizard. Now he is part of the family, he requires regular cuddles or the claws come out. He is a chatty cat - hello I am the Thomas. But not the long stories that Chocolat used to tell us.
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