I love these dead days between Christmas & New Year.  It always seems to me a mellow time of thinking about amazing possibilities and the fact that many never reach fruition doesn’t matter at all. Mind adventures are the order of the day – or days. Little is expected of you while you gird your loins for another day or two of excess. And this very fact seems to bring forth ideas, like when you take it easy and your mind is in neutral the imagination gallops off, free at last and marvellous new projects are dreamed up and even executed. Also of course this is a time of recuperation from the excesses of Christmas.

This year was different. This year I indulged in no excesses and am amazed to relate that this was the best festive season I can remember, ever (remember being the operative word.) this year it was my love and myself plus Fidelio the juvenile cat. We watched a lot of carol singers on TV & some animated stuff and we simply enjoyed being together – I do wish we had tried this sooner it was extremely agreeable, cheap and with no hangovers. Who’d have thought it? It is my birthday on Christmas day – a fact I have always resented vigorously and  have always got wrecked one way or another and regarded this as a sacred duty and now this?

However these between-days have always been exceptional for me and now is no different. I have also had some brilliant Good Fridays and I expect it is an aspect of my perversity – nothing is expected of me so I come up with the goods. I wrote one of my most profitable short stories one Good Friday and I have begun a lot of new projects on these down days. This year the weather has been extremely cooperative in keeping nose to grindstone shoulder to wheel and all the other clichés. It is soggy beyond belief and though today we have a lovely brisk wind to keep us moving, it has begun to issue fine drops of the wet stuff so is a disincentive again.

This year I have company in the shape of Fidelio cat who uses a cat tray, I am eager for him to relocate his ablution processes so I put a lead on him intending to take him walkies, he put on his brakes, refused to walk until he got free and took off out the front gate alone – a heart stopping moment and I grabbed him by his tail which he rightly resented and gave me a nasty bite and many scratches, he also attacked the lead and ran round the house like a maniac chewing vigorously at it – now frayed quite badly. My animal experience only applies to dogs and while I always knew they were totally different I hadn’t realised quite how different. Cats do not come to call, cats do not respect boundaries eg he always accompanies me to the bathroom, slips in at speed and mounts the pedestal behind me, where he purrs loudly and rubs against me, this is curiously distracting and he follows this by peering at the flushing lavatory, examining it closely. OK I should close the door but his cat tray shares the lavatory so it is not possible to close the door. Anyway I live alone mostly and tend not to close doors I will learn!

He doesn’t look up pleading to sit on me he jumps on me walks over me on his way someplace else then he come over all affectionate and pushes his face into mine, my friend sees this as kissing, I see it as an intrusion into my space while his cat space is sacred. It is pleasant enough having a silky warm animal cuddling up on your chest while you watch something gruesome on TV but remember the cat has chosen to spend a little time with you and will decide when he gets bored, regardless of what part of Stig Larsen you have arrived at. So, just when you could do with a bit of support he will relocate to the floor or Miaow at the door until you open it, then miaow on the other side to come back in. Or he will decide to take part in the TV experience close up and personal sniffing at the screen and concealing sub titles completely. And he stiffens with resentment when you request that he move followed by a shove. Daggers he glares.

Oh dear this was supposed to have been all about me and the quiet liberation of my creative force! The only link I can think of is the perversity of cat and human. And these dear dead days have been enlivened by cat experiences to an extent that has driven out creative juices or at least rerouted them.

Did I say mellow days? Am I sure?

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