The air is a little clearer, and some of the birds have returned from their southern journeys, taking a chance that the snow has finally left for the season and inhabiting the several dozen birdhouses on our property.
The sun is shining brightly into the windows, and my scattered thoughts turned to cleaning and sprucing up the house for the warm months to follow. So, I turned off the heat, cracked a few windows and began dusting, cleaning fan blades, washing floors, and cleaning carpets.
As a tiny splurge, I went shopping to replace a few throw rugs and get a bright spring-like welcome mat for the front porch. After vacuuming the porch and laying down the mat, I returned indoors to finish some laundry and write a story to meet my editor’s deadline.
Just after filing the story, Argyle, my Bishon Frise whimpered to go outside. I attached his leash, stepped out the front door and squish–my foot hit something that did not feel like a welcome at all. Looking down, my sneakers were blood splattered and upon investigation, I realized that our adopted feral cat left me a gift and initiated the welcome mat at the same time. Proud as could be, she waited for praise while watching me pick up the bloodied, dismembered chipmunk and toss it into the bushes.
I’ve been told that this is a compliment and if so, we have been complimented numerous times by our serial killer cat. I should have known to look before I stepped, for oftentimes, I will open the door to a fresh heart, slithery entrails, mutilated mouse or a beheaded bird.
Perhaps, dear little kitty–you could not compliment us so often?