How are the pets, you ask? (Well, pretend you asked — I am.)
– It’s been ridiculously nice here lately, weather-wise. So I’ve sat outside with Henny and Beany the past couple of days (Birdy is less interested in the great outdoors), which Beany loves. It’s impossible to catch her to make her go inside, though, so the trick I’ve discovered is leaving the door open and then getting behind her and clapping. Sometimes that doesn’t work, though. I was scolding her yesterday, which Henny thought was hilarious, and she decided to help by cornering Beany and barking at her. She did something similar a few months ago, when I scolded Birdy about chewing on the Christmas tree. My little enforcer.
– The nighttime routine for the pets goes like this: After I wash the dishes, I get the cats to go downstairs. Beany would rather not go, so I do the clapping thing (it can be the most unenthusiastic clapping, too, not forceful), and she reluctantly heads down. Birdy, on the other hand, loves it in the basement — every now and then I find her in the cats’ bed in the middle of the day — so she makes a beeline in that direction when I say, ‘It’s time to go downstairs.’ I think the cats spend most of the night cuddled up together, which is why Birdy likes it. I let Henny outside (and back in again) while I’m brushing my teeth, and when I’ve finished straightening things up, I tell Henny, ‘It’s time to go to bed,’ and she hops off the sofa and trots into my bedroom and inside her pup tent. Except now I don’t even have to say anything; as soon as I walk to turn off the last lamp in the living room, she’s on her way. It’s nice to have pets who are such sticklers for routine.
– Things about Henny: She likes bananas and kale. She knows the sound of a yogurt container from a room away. If I offer her a big treat (something she has to carry away to enjoy), she’ll sniff while I hold it and then look expectantly at the spot on the ground where I should put it — she’ll take small stuff from my hand, though. She’s learned to leave treats until I say ‘okay’. Once, when I was working in the basement, I heard her barking, and then I saw her at the top of the stairs (she won’t come downstairs). It turned out the mailman was at the front door (on the other side of the house), and she hadn’t been barking at him but to let me know.
– Things about Beany: She loves to be pet, but not on top of her head. You can work your way there, but if you come at her to pet her head, she’ll duck. She’s so friendly that when the neighbor dog (a little Westie) was sniffing her through the fence today, she flirted with him instead of running away. When I brought Beany to the vet right after adopting her, he said to watch out, because she would become a biter. Nobody has ever been so wrong about a cat.
– Things about Birdy: She has a fuzzy head, a whiny voice, and she’s always sitting on whatever I need. But I’m still pretty fond of her.