It's time for my annual blog about cats. I am passionnée, as they say in France: passionate about cats. And also distressed that we have way too many of them on the planet who are neglected and abandoned, and they are the focus of my volunteer work.
So today, my yearly photo post on French cats. Our lead supermodel is Artistic Cat, who was perfectly posed for a portrait, taken through a village gate.
One lovely thing about France is that pets are allowed most everywhere, and many restaurants and shops have their own. In Cluny the main hotel is on the square, and the sassy calico who has been the hotel’s celebrity resident for years can be found lounging on a sofa in the foyer, working the tables in the restaurant, or sunning outside the front door. There is an automatic sliding door at the entry, and I often see her waiting outside patiently until a guest enters or exits so she can zip through. Below, the sassy girl lollygagging in the gravel on the outdoor dining terrace, by our table:
And here are two shop cats, taking in some sun:
I volunteer at a Swiss neighbor’s “cat hospital”, which she has built in her back yard, as a shelter for abandoned or sick cats with no homes. At the moment several of the cats have a contagious bug, so I’ve temporarily brought home two of the healthy but feral kittens from her shelter, who are now installed in our guest room. Since they’re feral they hiss at the sight of a human, so my job as a foster mother is to socialize them. I must report that after just three days, it’s going well. They’re now fond of cuddles and are sitting in my lap. That is, when they’re not bouncing off the walls, quite literally. I call them the Flying Babycats. They careen about with not a single thought about where they might land after hurling themselves off the bed or dresser at breakneck speed. Fortunately they are so tiny that they are seemingly boneless and unbreakable. Meet the Flying Babycats, Tigrou and Bolero:
Now all we need is a loving family for these two wild things. Croisez les doigts, s’il vous plâit: cross your fingers!
Finally, I must include a photo of our rescue cat Domino, whom you know from previous posts. Living in Burgundy, Domino is of course fond of testing the wine, and he has quite a good nose.
And for your French lesson du jour, I’ll end on this note: I was talking to a French neighbor about cats the other day, and she said, well you know what they say about cats: "Les chiens ont des maîtres, les chats ont des valets." In other words, "dogs have owners, cats have staff.” I was tickled to hear that they have the same funny expression we do! And as two well-trained valets, we can attest to the truth of it.
In the COMMENTS: So many of you had your own French banking stories, I loved hearing them. Glad to hear it’s not just us!