Happily Ever After
Life in The Rural Retreat with a beautiful wife, three cats, garden wildlife, a camera, a computer – and increasing amounts about running
Panic In The Night
by admin - 23:52 on 06 May 2013
Hebrides: Islands on the Edge began on BBC1 tonight, and a superb look at Scotland's wildlife it is, but the real action was in The Rural Retreat's garden.
The Pride had spent most of the day taking it easy indoors so it was no surprise that Pandora should go for a stroll after the programme finished. What she disregarded was the fact that recently we've had not one but two Mystery Moggies mooching around the area and taking too much interest in pine marten suppers.
A huge yowl warned me that all was not well. Poor Pandora must have been chased from the back of the garden, for a second later she burst through the cat-flap with such speed and force that the flap was knocked six feet into the living room. Her pursuer, only inches behind, chose not to follow her indoors.
Worse was to come for the terrified tabby, who thought she'd reached safe ground. Maia, startled awake from her sofa doze by the abrupt entry, chased Pandora upstairs and threw in a few yowls and hisses for good measure. Then she came back down and shouted at Willow too. Maia's not good in a crisis.
Pandora slunk downstairs half an hour later after a grooming session needed to tidy up all traces of the panic pee she'd performed during her escape from Mystery Moggy. Poor puss.
So the appearance just after eleven of a pine marten on the garden gate – the first I've seen in the flesh for months – was a bit of an anticlimax. The kittens (definitely not The Fearless Ones tonight) watched intently through the living room window; Maia stood guard by the flapless cat-flap and peered at the diner through the opening. The marten (whose bib appeared familiar) certainly saw me and must have seen the kittens but munched away unperturbed.
The cat-flap flap, which was already cracked (probably by Maia's bulk), is now completely broken and beyond repair. I wonder if we can get a new one on the building insurance? In the meantime it will have to be boarded up at night and when I'm out tomorrow. Curious Mystery Moggies might not push past a strange cat-flap but a hole in a door may be too much temptation.
Which means that The Pride will have to reacquaint themselves with their litter trays. It's a hard life.
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