On the rest of this today, and the next today, the humans pack and unpack their bags several times each and change their suitcases twice. This suggests indecision to me, but they eventually settle on the right items to take and then, in the evening of the next today, there’s a knock on the front door.
Gemma and I look at each other – this must be Mrs Elkins, our cat sitter, although she was going to have an easy time of it. Moving two stuffed toys around the house wouldn’t be too strenuous. Where she’d have to be clever is removing the right amount of food, both tins of wet and bags of dry, from the house regularly, even though we weren’t eating it. Mary walks to the front door and opens it and welcomes in a tall, fair-skinned woman with piercing blue eyes. She looks nice to me. Gemma looks at her with practised disdain.
“Yes, Mrs Elkins, welcome,” says Mary. “I’ll just get our flight information for you. Somewhat surprisingly, the two cats are here to meet you. Normally, they scamper off and we have to find them.”
Mary walks into the kitchen and Mrs Elkins looks at us with a smile. We look back at her with interest. Mary soon comes back clutching a neatly typed piece of paper which she hands to the lady visitor along with a front-door key.
“Oh, you’re going to The Maldives. How nice, I’ve always wanted to go there. Direct flights too. That’ll be nice.”
“Yes, we could have gone via Amsterdam,” says John, coming into the room clutching a toothbrush still in its wrapper, “but we decided to go direct, though we could change it I suppose and spend a day in the city.”
“I think direct flights are so much better,” says Mrs Elkins, “and then you don’t have to worry about what to do about your luggage or having it lying around the tarmac for hours unsupervised.”
Gemma and I stare at the humans, trying to transmit thoughts of direct flights into their minds.
“Yes, that’s true,” says Mary, “we’ve been to Amsterdam, and I thought the Anne Frank House was poignant and the Rijksmuseum quite overwhelming in terms of the amount of art. I don’t think we’ll want to change our flights once we’re there. We’ll want to enjoy ourselves and not want to think about coming home.”
“I think you’re right. Enjoy the sunshine and forget about coming home. Anyway, which of these kitties is which? I’d guess the male one is the kind one and Gemma is the one who’s been glaring at me.”
“She glares at everyone,” says John, “in fact, she normally glares at you and then runs off, so you’re quite honoured because she has stayed in your presence. She must really like you.”
I turn to stare at the wall for 10 seconds as I’m quite amused by what John has said and I can imagine Gemma is not pleased.
“I think she’s just inquisitive,” says Mrs Elkins, “anyway, I will see you two kitties tomorrow morning after your human parents have caught their rather early morning flight from the airport. Bye kitties and you two have a wonderful time in The Indian Ocean and don’t worry about your pets. I will look after them.”
With that, she turns around and Mary accompanies her out of the room. John goes into his bedroom to put his toothbrush somewhere and Gemma trots downstairs to kick the stuffing out of a toy dog with her back paws, one exercise she learned as part of an anger management course she took online. I retire under the newly covered blue chair where Whose Body is waiting. Before they go to bed, both John and Mary come over and stroke me, telling me they’ll miss me, and they’ll be back soon. I purr and miaow to show I will miss them too, which I will, as they are both kind people with their hearts in the right place. From what I’ve heard of The Maldives, they’ll soon be underwater because of Climate Change, and I hope that doesn’t happen when John and Mary are there.