When people ask us how many cats we have we often answer 3 and a half! You see we have Henry, Firkin and Fumée who never travel far. If they are not present for a meal we worry and check they have not been shut in somewhere and I don't think any has been missing for more than a day except for when Fumée got locked in the gite for 3 days!
Then there is Foggy.
|Foggy "helping" in the polytunnel|
Foggy is the epitome of feline independence. He often disappears for long periods of time before arriving home as though he had never been further than the polytunnel. Last year he excelled himself and was away for 8 long weeks, during which time we heard of a very similar cat to him being hit by a car. We thought he was dead. Then one morning he arrived home, full of beans, looking fantastic and demanding food and cuddles. So this year when he went again we were less worried. We were still concerned and missed him but know his ways and accepted them. However when 8 weeks of no Foggy came and went we did become more anxious so imagine our relief then when Simon saw him at some derelict buildings not far from us. He meowed at Simon in recognition but refused to come close. Several nights later we were all in the car and saw him cross the road in the same place so over the following days I walked that way and called him.
Day 1 - Nothing.
Day 2 - I heard his characteristic meow (it is exceedingly deep and guttural) and he finally appeared at a broken upstairs window. I coaxed him down and he savoured some cuddles before heading off.
Day 3 - I called and this time he appeared almost immediately and started to walk back with me and the dogs. However after a while on the road he became nervous so I scooped him up and carried him home. He had obviously moused well in his time away and I can tell you that 5kg of cat feels a lot more like 10kg when you carry them for around ¾ of a km!
That was just over a week ago and he is still here. Despite supposedly being an outdoor cat he has been in the house, happily ensconced on the sofa enjoying all the attention. As with last year he looks fabulous and has not been frightened off by our 4 extra canine guests.
|Firkin, Fumée and Foggy (through our very dirty front door!)|
Why he stayed away so long is a mystery we will never know but without a doubt he is happy to be home. And we are so happy to have him back. The look on the boys' faces said it all when I arrived with him so whilst toys, books and games were eagerly opened on Christmas Day I do think that possibly our best Christmas present this year was having Foggy come home.