Miss Kitty had me worried lately. In the pre-dawn hours I’d wake to the sound of her thumping and bumping around in the bathtub. Normally this would be an indication of a critter chase but since we moved to Gold Canyon there’s been no call for her mousing skills, a fact I am sure she bemoans or be-meows as the case may be. Certainly there is no shortage of outdoor critters she could chase. Our home functions as the base of operations for the landscape business and the dumpster full of trimmings at the back of the property attract all manner of critter making it an exotic destination spot for her forays whenever she is lucky enough to escape outside. What she hasn’t grasped is that when she is out there she is transformed from predator to prey; her black and white coloring makes her an easy target for the passing coyote or hawk. So I do my best to keep her inside and, as expected, she grows bored. Bored bordering on crazy, I feared, based on her bathtub activity. I even picked up a book at a garage sale a few weeks ago titled Cat Watching: Why cats purr and everything else you wanted to know, but it had nothing about cats in the bathtub. Instead it explained that while cats do a good job of cleaning themselves, they really don’t care for water which made Kitty’s behavior all the more bizarre.
Kitty has always liked the bathtub. It’s a deep, oversize tub set in a platform of Saltillo tiles and positioned next to a large window that overlooks the garden. Deep enough you can submerge up to your chin; so deep you have to step into it to clean it. When we first moved here, Kitty made the rounds of the house and, upon discovering the bathtub and its window, declared it her spot for bird watching. Whenever one of us takes a long, hot soak Kitty walks around and around the platform with great interest until she is splashed, something that never fails to infuriate her while drawing a laugh from the bather. While her love of the tub was no surprise to us, we were a tad concerned when she boldly jumped and thumped inside it for no apparent reason day after day.
Miss Kitty is resourceful. In fact, if she could read, (and sometimes I wonder, especially given her penchant for flopping on top of the Wall Street Journal) I wouldn’t put it past her to have skimmed Who Moved My Cheese? in an effort to get a better handle on the habits of mice. While it wouldn’t have given her pointers on rodent behavior, it might have given her the idea to look elsewhere for predatory entertainment. Today, after returning from my morning walk, I entered the bedroom once again to the sound of tub-thumping. Running into the bathroom I caught Kitty in mid-bump; my entrance causing her to pull up short while at the same time I spied a cricket leap for his life. Unfortunately he couldn’t jump too far, for hanging from Kitty’s lower jaw were his two tiny black legs. She stared me down for a few seconds, as if to say, excuse me, I’m busy here, then reached out a front paw in her dainty way before slamming it down hard on top of the cricket. Miss Kitty, one; Cricket, zero. Zero as in dead.
Really, I can’t complain. I never realized we had a cricket issue thanks to Miss Kitty. She has found a new job and, once again, is throwing herself into it with wild abandon. Of course you might want to warn the crickets to be afraid; be very afraid.