The cat lovers

Cats in charge

Pauli, whose story this is, was a slightly undersized 10, or possibly 11, year old school boy. He was the youngest in a family of 5, having 2 sisters both much older, who were in their final year at uni. The sisters patronised Pauli as if he were still a baby causing him to be resentful toward and afraid of them at the same time.
His parents, who both worked, and still thought themselves to be upwardly mobile, despite their fast approaching middle age, had little time to spare for him as his conception had really been an afterthought and he was now holding them back in their upward climb.
Pauli was lonely and had few friends, but fortunately he had a very good relationship with his grandmother who lived a few streets away and often took him in after school. He enjoyed going to grandma’s place as there was the added benefit of Pauli’s grandmother being a cat lover, and the genes for this peculiarity had been passed onto Pauli where they were firmly embedded. Grandma had a lovely ragdoll girl cat that was always willing to play with Pauli, always allowing him to pat her as long as he wished, and always showing her affection with the loudest purrs of delight she could manage.

However Pauli craved a cat of his own.

One day at home by himself after school, and listlessly playing a computer game, he heard a scratching sound at the front door and when he opened it, there on the mat was a dishevelled little black cat with matted fur and weeping eyes. Pauli recognised the cat straight away as it used to live a couple of doors down, with people who had recently left the area, and obviously had shamelessly left the cat behind to fend for itself. He brought some mincemeat and a saucer of water which was scoffed down, but when he tried to touch it, the little black cat disappeared immediately.

When it came again the next day, and the same thing happened, he rang his grandmother who after some careful thought laid out a plan. She told Pauli: ’this is what we’ll do. I’ll bring over my cat basket. See whether you can entice the cat to eat inside the basket, if yes, close the flap, call me and we take it to the vet.’
The plan worked well and with the cat complaining in a loud voice they arrived at the vet clinic, where they had the luck to strike the clinic’s principal who also happened to be a cat lover. The vet took to the little black cat at once calling it ‘Sweet Pea’ and after the examination made his pronouncement: ‘It is a she. She has been spayed. She is a ‘Black Oriental’ rare and expensive. She has a bladder infection which I can cure with antibiotics. She needs to be kept inside for a bit while she recovers.
There is nothing else wrong with her. She needs grooming and attention. The weeping eye is a blocked tear duct and is not serious.’
‘Well Pauli’, Grandma said thoughtfully as they drove away, ‘that was the easy bit; now for the hard bit; talking to your parents’.
That evening she had a serious talk with her son and daughter in law, pointing out their failings with Pauli and how they could make it up to him by allowing him to keep the cat. She finally succeeded in her argument.
The parents gave in, unfortunately not out of compassion for Pauli or the cat, but for the fact that the cat was a valuable little animal with snob value attached and it came free. That was the language these 2 social climbers understood.

The next day the two cat lovers went out and bought all that is necessary to maintain a cat in style: the litter tray, the selection of cat food, the cat basket, the cat litter, the little toys on strings and last but not least the scratching post. Then they had a naming session and although they toyed with the idea of calling her ‘Sweet Pea’ the choice came down in favour of ‘Jasmine’.
They installed all the gear at home and waited anxiously for Jasmine to settle in. Pauli spent all his free time caring for her but after a few days they realised things were not going well. Though Jasmine’s health improved, and she allowed herself to be groomed, she remained shy and aloof hiding in the wardrobe or under the bed most of the time.
This saddened poor Pauli so much that he became quite depressed, causing grandma to worry not just about the cat but now also about Pauli.

She then made a unilateral decision!

She brought Pauli a young blue Burmese cat to provide company for Jasmine and indirectly for Pauli. This Burmese had come at a reasonable price as he had been the runt of a litter of blue Burmese kittens, and although he had grown big and strong he never coloured up blue, just remaining a delicate shade of lilac. This technical deficiency would have counted against him had he been a show cat, but it had done no harm to his personality. He was outgoing, exuberant, affectionate, and bossy.

In yet another joint session between grandma and grandson they agreed they should call him Maximillian, Max for short. And you know what, as the rest of the family were hardly ever home they never realised that Max was in residence, that was until he found his feet and started to assert himself.

First he took Jasmne into his care

The gained control of the biggest basket.

He re-organised the ironing

Checked out the fireplace.

and finallybecame head of the household