Now it came to pass that Shady Acres has enjoyed quite a lengthy respite from the onslaughts of a feline nature for some months. There have been the usual barn cats, of course, but nary a furry body has bothered the house and its surrounding parameters for some time.
Then a friend brought a cat named “Skits” and dropped it off at the farm because she was unable to keep it, and friends of hers had an unsuccessful attempt at acclimating him to their premises. Now Skits is a beautiful cat, neutered and accustomed to human company, but decidedly an outside cat. Or so we have been promised.
There was at least a week when we saw neither hide nor hair of Skits. We all assumed that he wasn’t favorably impressed with Shady Acres and its large array of barn and chicken house cats and had moved on to more friendly territory. There is a neighbor who will sometimes take in errant felines, march them off to the vet and deprive them of their abilities to reproduce and then bring them back– sometimes to let them go again, but often to attempt to tame them and keep them domesticated. In the week that Skits was absent, there was much speculation that maybe neighbor Kit G. had taken him in, finding him already neutered, and that he was enjoying a life of riley there.
No such luck.
There came a day when Skits presented himself at the door of the sunroom, on the newly renovated deck. He was noisily and insistently announcing his presence and Certain Man was not impressed. “He better find somewhere else to meow!” he said darkly, “or I shall help him find somewhere else to be and it won’t be any fun for him!”
So Middle Daughter and CMW shooed and “encouraged” and tried to make “being on the deck” as unattractive as possible. Though Skits really is a beautiful cat, it is disconcerting to the family at Shady Acres to see him stalking birds at the bird feeder, and parking his very beautiful body directly in line with nests full of fledglings, and in general standing sentry over the bird population.
In addition, it seemed like every evening, Skits would present himself outside the windows on the front deck, directly in line with Certain Man’s La-Z-boy and meow away. This was not met with anything that was even remotely close to approval by the man of the house. In these instances, there was more than gentle encouragement for the cat to move on.
Over the last few weeks, there have been some improvements made at Shady Acres, one of which was a set of stairs going up to the “upper deck” that Middle Daughter designed on top of the sun room. One evening, after Certain Man had been especially disgruntled with the obnoxious meows, we were relieved to note that Skits had seeming disappeared from the deck. It was our hope that he had retired to the barn or the pavilion (or even the middle of the busy highway out front). Certain Man and his wife retired to their bed, and scarcely had Certain Man’s Wife gotten into bed when suddenly, right outside her second story bedroom window was heard, “Meow.”
Skits had found and appropriated the new steps leading up to the deck. From there, it was an easy hop over to the roof and on to the interesting windows where he deemed there may be human companionship.
It was nearly impossible to see outside, but CMW peered through the screen, and sure enough, there was Skits, directly outside the screen. He was standing on his hind legs, with his feet up to the window, looking in and calling out for the attention he so desired. Certain Man’s Wife was not impressed. “GIT!!!” she intoned sternly.
“What???” asked a very sleepy Certain Man.
“That cat!” Said Certain Man’s Wife. “He’s right outside this window.”
“He better find some place else to be!” Said Certain Man, “Or he isn’t going to live!”
Well, that was encouragement enough for Skits to drop onto all fours and pad over to the window that is directly in front of Certain Man’s head. CMW headed over to the bathroom to fetch a large glass of water to throw out through the screen, but in the meantime, Certain Man had pulled himself up onto his elbows and was looking out into the dark of the garage roof. Skits was plastering himself up against the screen. CMW set the tall glass of water on the end table and poked her head up over the pillows to see what was going on. At the very same instant, Certain Man decided that he was going to exercise his manly strength and send that cat flying with a punch through the screen, and his fist caught CMW on the left cheekbone as it went by.
Wowser! That smarted. CMW got out of the way. Fast. And Skits took himself on down the roof to the far end. Certain Man, unaware that he had even connected with CMW’s face kept a sharp lookout out the window, and soon the cat was back. Certain Man picked up the glass of water and flung it through the screen at the hapless victim. There was a great splashing noise and Skits took himself hurriedly down the length of the roof to the far end, and Certain Man complained loudly concerning the fact that his bed was wet, his pillow was wet, and life in general was greatly in a mess.
But then he looked out the darkened window and ascertained that Skits was very much out of reach and wasn’t in any mood to visit the window again, and that made him certain the cat was distracted long enough for him to get into dreamland, so he turned over, pulled the covers up and promptly fell asleep. CMW, on the other hand, had a most touchy red spot on her cheek, and was completely awake, and unsure that Skits had any intention of settling down for the night.
When Friend Lydia had asked about bringing the cat, it was Middle Daugher who had given permission, so Certain Man’s Wife decided to call her and ask for assistance. So she traipsed across the landing to tell Middle Daughter, who promptly got tickled at the situation and willingly agreed to come and help.
So, CMW, clad in her blue nightie, and Middle Daugher, also in her jammies, ventured forth into the night. And Middle Daughter had a flash light, and CMW armed herself with a garden hose with the great high pressured sprayer end attached. And whilst the neighborhood slept, including Certain Man, the two fearless ladies did battle with the elusive Skits. CMW was able to score a direct hit with the water, causing Skits to go flying across the roof, down onto the deck, back up on the opposing roof where she hid behind the edge of the house where CMW could not reach her, even with the fifty foot stream of water.
But that was okay, because Skits had appeared to learn her lesson. Down the steps he flew once the dangerous females had returned to the house and there has not been anymore nocturnal visits to the upper roof.
Not that he has gone away for good.
CMW is quite certain that there is more to this story!