So … we’re stacked out with cats and Lyra & Mowgli’s little ones growing and getting bigger, stronger and faster. Seventeen cats in a small house isn’t easy ……. seventeen cats divided into three separate groups who need to be kept apart, whilst 5 can go outdoors and 12 need to stay in …. starts to be a logistical challenge. With a bit of thought its manageable ….. until the human wants to move around the house, tidy up, and look after the cats.
Take for example the simple task of putting laundry away. First challenge is to get through the kitchen and lounge and to the bottom of the stairs. The five permanent residents need to be stopped from tripping the human up and following into the airlock in the hallway at the bottom of the stairs. Lounge door firmly shut, the door at the bottom of the stairs can be opened. Care needs to be taken that whichever gang of kittens and adults that are on the loose at that point all stay upstairs and do not sneak down into the hallway and hide under the shoe rack – thereby risking them getting outdoors when the front door is opened. Any strays need to be put on the stairs side of the door whilst balancing the laundry basket on the stairs. Curious kittens then need removing from laundry basket and the door closing before more of the kittens sneak under the shoe rack. As we all know, carrying a laundry basket restricts view of feet, nevertheless stairs need to be negotiated without stepping on swarms of fast moving, unpredictable and spiky kittens. Once the summit of the landing is reached the next challenge is to get into bedroom without swarm of felines following. Usual strategy of opening the door just a crack and sliding through is not possible whilst carrying laundry basket. Open door wide, kittens rush through, drop basket whilst trying to impede kittens, crawl under bed to retrieve kittens, put first kitten outside bedroom door, catch second kitten, put outside bedroom door whilst first kitten rushes back in. Repeat this process 15 times whilst various kittens attempt access to bedroom. Put laundry away. Lie on bed for a moment, gathering strength and patience to reverse journey back to kitchen, and trying to decide whether to attempt to take empty laundry basket with or not. Inevitably return journey is not without demands to be fed both by gang on the loose and the other group who are confined to their room but chorusing through their bedroom door. Gang on the loose fed. Door opened to the others – restrained kits rush out, loose kits rush in. Mothers start a fight over who’s kit hissed at whom first. Kittens climb in laundry basket. further half hour of feeding, emptying litter trays (because whenever you go into the room someone has always just used the tray) and frantically trying to separate gingers from tabbies and mediate in arguments between parents. Crawl back downstairs going through air lock process in reverse.
Arrive back in kitchen to discover one odd sock lying on floor.
Seriously contemplate setting fire to sock rather than repeat journey through house.