Saturday, April 18, 2020

A victim of social distancing: the coffee bar

Some of you may remember we used to have "Coffee and Kittens" on Sundays. This was more popular back when we were in the barn--for some reason people seemed more comfortable grabbing coffee and cookies out there. In the house, visitors are more likely to say "Thank you but no thanks." I assume it's politeness--not wanting to be a bother. If they only understood I'd feel better if they drank the coffee I'd already made and the cookies I bought for only them! Once people left, I sadly poured the untouched coffee down the drain.

I'd planned to move the tall coffee cabinet from the barn into the upstairs of the house where the cats are, thinking that if people had the food near them, without me hovering, they'd be more likely to make themselves at home.

But that's not an issue any longer. No one is going to consume food here for months due to COVID-19, even if they do visit a cat.

It occurred to me I probably should put the coffee bar away. It was a rather sad half hour, throwing some things out, and finding a home in my overpacked cupboards for the bowls. Luckily a volunteer couple had stopped by to see if the cats needed anything, and they were able to give a home to the box of untouched individual creamers that otherwise would have gone in the trash.

The kitchen bookcase used to be Fluffy's perch. I purchased it as a cat tree. When he slept there, the other cats all joined him, ranged across the shelves. Since he passed, the shelf beds were abandoned. I keep one bed on the bottom, but the rest of the piece has reverted to human use. What to put there now that the coffee bar is gone?

Books I need to read.

My unread books previously sat in an unruly pile. When I cleaned, they had to be moved from place to place. With them poised right in my face very day, perhaps they'll get read!

Once the weather warms up, my porch will be set up with two comfy chairs, 10 feet apart, for occasional visitors. While I've cut back almost entirely on my alcohol consumption, perhaps I could put a little wine bar out there with small single serving bottles of water and wine that visitors could help themselves to. They could swig right out of their bottle, then toss it in the recycling. So classy!

Is there anything anyone else has put away or changed, anticipating a quiet summer of social distancing?

Wednesday, April 15, 2020

Pepper and Timea check in, and food from Jo

It's spring in social isolation, but given that I've always been a remote worker in the boonies, less has changed for me than it has for others.

But because "others" are talking about deep home cleanings, getting organized, and pushing paperwork woes out of the way (those who aren't home-schooling, caring for other people in need, or recovering from COVID-19 that is), it can't help but rub off on me. Let's hope it sticks. I'd love it if this were finally the summer that all the big projects were completed, so that future summers I could spend less time scrambling around like an underprepared squirrel.

Jo (rescuer of Pepper and Timea) sent canned food again this month, which is always a blessing:

I emailed Nancy, P&T's adoptive mom, for photos to send to Jo, and she always comes through. Given that they are most-amusing cats, I'm sure she has a camera full of shots. Pepper has always preferred being under blankets rather than over them. Since Timea is his buddy, it's not hard to find him when he hides.

Laundry-snoozing is a traditional cat pastime that Pepper didn't get to experience here.

To date, Pepper and Timea have been my most "perfect" cats. They are amusing without being dangerous (no throwing themselves at my feet), neat (no shoveling of cat litter, no pushing of objects, no dragging cardboard shreds around the house), and have the perfect personality balance (Timea liking to be closer to you, Pepper more independent). They are BIG cats, so there is the issue of hauling them to the vet in crates, but that is offset by their beautiful presence. They also brought me a friend (Jo) and went to a friend (Nancy).

Pepper and Timea have been a perfect circle in my life.