Saturday, 26 January 2013

On a what?

A boat, that's what. For seven nights only, I will be living on a houseboat. The boat in question is in the middle of Rotterdam which is host ( the city, not the boat, that would be a very small cinema ) to the Rotterdam International Film Festival. I'm attending the World Premiere of Dummy Jim, the film that I knitted jumpers for way back in 2011. Dummy Jim has been nominated for an award at the festival which is something to be very excited about. You can catch a glimpse of me onscreen but I'm certain to be upstaged by my trusty cat companion who managed to sweet talk Matt the director and Ian the cameraman into giving him some screen time as well. 

Birdfeeding in the snow.

We leave tomorrow and till then I have been taking it easy with a little light knitting and a lot of snow watching. We haven't been hard hit this winter, especially compared with other parts of the UK but I have enjoyed watching the light changing as the snow falls.

Chilly view from the attic.

The pus-filled cat is feeling much better, thank you all very much for your concern. He was checked out by the vet this week and all is well. While we are away he will be making the most of his favourite spot on the living room window, right above the radiator. Seems his heat seeking ability was undamaged by the big bite.

Ridiculous beast.

Tuesday, 15 January 2013

It was the day the cat exploded.

One of the best opening lines from any novel comes from The Crow Road written by Scottish author Iain Banks. " It was the day my grandmother exploded."  I'm having one of those.

Not a happy fellow.

 It all began yesterday* when a friend was visiting, I was thanking her for a Christmas gift, a tin of sardines for Magnus, when I happened to look over at the boy in question. He was looking a bit odd,  as if he had converted to vegetarianism and was storing carrots in one cheek hamster-style. Closer inspection found a large swelling and a nasty bite. Looked like an abscess to me.  I made a note to keep an eye on him and to make an appointment with the vet in the morning. The evening was spent fussing at the cat and worriedly examining the swollen part.  Normally this would be foolhardy behaviour because as we all know, the cheekbone is in his case, connected to the tooth bone. The lack of violence when being handled led me to believe that he was feeling rather ill and I decided to keep him inside overnight rather than offering the chilly delights of the back garden in December. I left the boy asleep, snorting gently on his favourite rocking chair.

Dyeing yarn to take to Rotterdam.  Rotterdam? More later.

7am, New Years Eve I was woken by some scratching at the door and the plaintive howling of a cat who wanted me to think he was starving.  I jumped out of bed to save the carpet from a shredding and accompanied Magnus to the kitchen. After wolfing down some catfood, the lad sat on his haunches, flicked a back leg towards his face, extended his claws and exploded the abscess. There is nothing in the world that can prepare you for the smell that exudes from a burst cat abscess. Think of the smelliest recesses of the compost bin mixed with something that has been dead for too long and you're still nowhere near. It went everywhere, on me, on the floor and all over Magnus. For the visually minded, I can tell you that it was the colour of a bad strawberry custard. Pustard.

I cleaned the floor, cleaned the cat, cleaned myself and removed my pajamas in preparation for a boil wash. By then it was 7.15.  New Year's Eve. I left a damp cat in the kitchen and retired to another, less pungent room. So there I was, waiting for the vet to open while the beast glared balefully at me through the frosted glass of the kitchen door. If this is a taste of things to come in 2013 then I'm doomed.

Happy New Year!

Socks. Thankfully pus free and smelling lovely
In other news, there has been some knitting. Made some socks of which I am rather proud. Thanks as usual to Mary Jane Mucklestone for her genius in charting Fair Isle Patterns and counting the number of stitches required so that I don't have to.

*You might have guessed that yesterday is not strictly accurate. After Magnus' recovery the whole household was struck down with colds and this is me catching up with things only two weeks late.