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In The Company of Cats


Always a little bit shy, Uni is definitely a cautious cat. When I’ve visited her in her own home she has tucked herself away beneath the bed until she hears the clatter of food. She was like that here at first, hiding in the little cat bed at the far end of the living room her pupils huge, and alert. When she did venture out her back was slung low to the ground and if I approached her directly she would immediately run for her life disappearing behind or underneath the first suitable object. In the mornings I wake up and look over at the little cat tree by the bedroom window, which Uni has made her bed. She is perched on top, balancing like a plate on a stick and looking like the Cheshire cat from Alice in Wonderland, with a sleepy smile on her face, Uni has the perfect view of the window and of me while I sleep. Between naps she watches, patiently waiting for me to stir. When I do I look over to find her looking back at me and I beckon her my hand outstretched- she approaches gently, cautiously. Arriving at my hand she rubs one of her chubby cheeks into it before turning and giving the other cheek a go. She purrs and I smile, stroking the length of her ached back, as I reach the base of the tail it pops up automatically, and I do it again and again, her tail popping up each time until she gets fed up and gently paw slaps my hand away. She wanders off to the corner of the bed and sits nose pointed in the direction of the kitchen, to polite to ask for breakfast but every so often turning towards me and licking her lips…

Uni is a stunning cat, with teddy bear soft fur and the most beautiful coat I’ve ever seen on a BSH. From the back her fur resembles the wings of a butterfly, completely symmetrical and made up of thick, vivid grey swirls that get thinner as they curl into her face framing her huge questioning eyes like a superhero’s mask.

A lot of Uni’s day is spent either in the bedroom, snoozing on her little perch whilst basking in the sunlight, or hiding in the shade underneath the bed. Evenings are her playtime when she’ll come in for a cuddle or just to crash out in public, plonking herself onto the rug, hind legs akimbo and her little paws bawled into tiny fists.

At home Uni is used to a lovely view from her kitchen window that looks out onto leafy gardens, full of wildlife and maybe the odd cat or fox passing by. The balcony here faces a usually reasonably quiet road, but the sunny weather has filled the trendy wine bar opposite and the popular restaurant’s are now teaming with so many customers that they are spilling out onto the street. It has taken Uni one or two nights to get used to the commotion but now her evenings are spent crouched on the cat stand on the balcony, peering over at the drunken spectacles that appear more and more frequently as darkness approaches. I watch from my sofa as her head turns from left to right following the sound of revellers as they travel unsteadily down the street.

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