Saturday, 11 August 2007

Planes and cats and stuff

Feeling a bit melancholy, having just taken Jenny to Heathrow. She's going to Uppsala in Sweden for a conference, back on Friday. We were cursing ourselves for having booked on the 11.20 flight, as that required us to leave Royston a 8, when we don't normally surface before 9.30 on a Saturday. Despite having taken it relatively easy last night, neither of us felt exactly brilliant this morning. However, to compensate, the traffic moved freely all the way, and we were at Terminal 1 by 9; well early. Coming back, I noticed that the traffic heading towards LHR was dense and slow-moving in several places on the M25. So next time, which pain do we choose - early start or traffic jams on the M25?

A couple of airport stories
Jenny's been going to the States 3 or 4 times a year for ages, and in the early days used to land back at LHR around 6 or 7 in the morning, which required me to get up at 4.30 or 5 to go and pick her up. One Saturday morning I did this, arriving slightly early. I got a coffee and settled in with my book. The plane landed and eventually folks started straggling through, so I started paying attention, but Jenny was nowhere to be seen. When it finally became clear everyone on the plane had passed through, I went to the Enquiries desk, slightly concerned.

No, she wasn't on the passenger list. Strange. Then the girl looked on the following day's flight. There she was. I'd met the right flight, just on the wrong day! I chuckle about it still.

On one occasion, again quite a few years ago, Jenny flew from Stansted up to Edinburgh, probably to look at some fossils a professional collecter was trying to sell her. On the way back she was reading, and when the plane landed, she just got off and followed everyone else into the terminal. Asking at a desk where she might catch a bus to Cambridge drew a curious look, and it started to dawn on her that maybe she wasn't quite where she thought she was. Sure enough, she was at Leeds. Fortunately she was able to get back on the plane, but I think they had to turn the aircon up to compensate for the added heat being generated by her face!

Question is, can I get some pictures of the cat into the middle of this text.

And the answer seems to be yes, but only by moving them manually, and even then the final layout isn't exactly wonderful. Ah well, it is free.

The official name of That Cat is actually Ruby, according to the Wood Green Animal Shelter whence she came several years ago. We are really glad to be allowed to live in her house, but she does have a couple of strangenesses. Most cats twitch the end of the tail, especially when aggravated. This one swishes the whole tail vigorously from side to side for no obvious reason. Weird.

The other weirdness is that she'll randomly bite you. Not hard, just enough to tell you she doesn't like whatever you're doing. Which might just be stroking her on your lap, for instance. Seems to be happening less often these days, but we still have no idea what provokes it. It can be somewhat embarrassing when she bites a guest.


Merri said...

We had a kitty like that. It IS odd when they bite for no apparent reason( Especially a bit disconcerting when it happens to guests)

Djamine said...

One of my cats, Gonzo, does that. He seems to want affection, and then he snaps at people while they're providing that affection.

According to my vet, some cats get overstimulated and bite lightly as a warning. The only way to curb it is to pay attention to the warning signs and to stop whatever your doing (petting, playing, et cetera) before the cat lashes out. It, uh, hasn't worked that well for us yet. We're trying to find other methods, but, in the interim, are just warning guests that our cat has borderline personality disorder.

Rob Clack said...

Ah, *over*stimulation. Now there's an interesting thought. Normally she can't get enough, and can be very demanding, but I wonder whether there are times when a little is too much.

And I like "borderline personality disorder". Hahahahaha!