6.30am: By standing immediately in front of his head and breathing heavily into his face, I awoke my master from his deep sleep. Even though he didn’t have to get up at this time today, I did it just in case—that’s what I happily do, just to be helpful. By the resulting surprised waving of his hands and shaking of his head, I gathered that he didn’t actually want to rise from his bed at this time. Accordingly, I went back to sleep but first made sure to repeatedly rub my cold wet nose over every part of his exposed skin I could find.
9.30am: My master had already woken up by now and gone downstairs so I also ventured downstairs. Having been let outside, I went out into the front yard and attended to my toiletries (being a cultured cat I haven’t used kitty litter boxes for years). I then squeezed my body under the front gate to check out my territory. (I own this patch of street.) I had made sure to avoid the other enormous, younger, woolly cat in the front yard that for some reason also lives on this property.
10.00am: I came home and went inside to have some breakfast that my master had kindly provided. Then I went back out into the front yard to do a final check on my territory.
10.30am: I came back inside again, ran up the stairs and went back to the comfort of my master’s bed.
5.00pm: After a normal day’s period of sleep, I woke up and came downstairs. I went out into the front yard to again attend to toiletries. Again, I checked out my territory. My master’s wife’s annoying enormous cat was there again in the front yard but I simply ignored her. She is always attempting to chase me around, methinks in an effort to play. I have long ago overcome the need for such frivolous play, though, sometimes, very occasionally, I do feel drawn to partake in these meaningless activities, and so I do so, just for a short time.
5.30pm: I came back inside for some dinner. The other younger cat was also being fed. Then I went back into the front yard and jumped up onto the brick wall and promptly fell asleep in the lookout my master built for me some years ago. On a busy day like this, I’m always left feeling decidedly weary.
7.20pm: I woke up and performed a big stretch. My master then provided me with a small portion of fresh chicken, which I ate with relish. For some reason, the other big, younger cat who lives here doesn’t really favour fresh chicken—all the better for me!
7.40pm: I jumped down off the fence and began my ritual of looking under and guarding the front gate. Sometimes, very rarely, a marauding tomcat will happen by and although that happens very infrequently, I am constantly on guard to be able to spring out from under the gate most unexpectedly, scare the life out of them and chase them away. That, I see, is my role in this household. (I am the guard cat.) The other big, young cat that lives here is thankfully not allowed out after dark, so I always have the yard to myself at this time.
9.30pm: Over the last few hours I have guarded the gate, occasionally venturing outside to check that there are no apparent threats to my master and his wife, and I have also patrolled around the front yard to maintain the security of my territory. I returned to stand beside the front door and my master came to provide me with the rest of my dinner.
10.10pm: It appears that the huge, young cat who also lives here has retired to bed—my master’s wife takes care of that. Previously, that young enormous cat, strangely enough, liked to sleep out in the garage. My master’s wife set up a luxurious bed for her out there, and she had liked to retire out there since she was very young. (Back then, the great big thing, although she was just past kitten stage, was already almost as big as me.) Now, this annoying creature appears to be kept in the house proper at night, largely at my master’s insistence. (This is a very annoying development.) Regardless, I am also ready to retire for the night. My master calls me, lets me in the house and slowly I move up the stairs, taking my time to reach the comfortable bed that awaits. (I like to take many minutes before I reach the top of the staircase, just for my master’s benefit so he can spend more valuable time with me.) When I finally reach the room, my master places some biscuits on the bed. He clicks his fingers and I quickly jump up there to devour them. I know I am being rewarded for my productive work of the day. Without my role of protector, who knows how many other cats might find their way into this property? My master’s wife is already in bed watching television. Because she is important to my master, I let her pat me.
10.20pm: Soon, I am back sitting in front of my master’s computer screen and blocking his view. I want to go to bed—this desk lamp is annoying me, and I believe he should also go to bed. Finally, he gives up trying to move me away from the computer screen and retires for the night. I find a comfortable place near him and fall asleep.
I know I will wake him up at 6.30am tomorrow morning—that is my job. I am a guard cat, but in addition, I am also the family alarm cat.
NOTE FROM THE AUTHOR:
For my mother, Marjory, who liked this little story.