Welcome to austinagrodolce … My family and I garden with more intention and enthusiasm than allocated budget or overall design plan. It shows. Wildlife populations don't seem to notice our lack of cohesive design, they just like the native plants here. It seems by growing local we've thrown out a welcome mat. Occasionally, we're surprised at who (and what) shows up.

Thursday, October 23, 2008

A funny thing happened this past weekend...

We were all set to meet friends at this great house in Fredericksburg we rent out once a year.
View from the house
It is fairly isolated, up on a hill with a great view, has a fabulous kitchen and is for us yet strategically close to the places we like to hit in the 'Burg.I'd spent the morning of the day we were to leave town making various goodies to take along. More on that in a moment.

Our friends have family in the area and so are more familiar with certain go-to spots, like a great breakfast buffet (Andy's), the hot place to get fresh tortillas (Hilda's)and we are the ones with the longer term CenTex gardening chops so we lead the way to Wildseed Farms where the butterflies were swarming and beetles were, well, ahem!,and new this year, a leisurely tour of the Herb Farm. Whenever I travel it is never a matter of "did I forget something" but always a question of "what did I forget?".

This year, I made eggplant butterand a batch of bread pudding for dessert. The eggplant butter I remembered but the pudding I accidentally left at home. That was karmic as my friend left her iced pumpkin bars at home as well. Fortunately I did not forget the steaks or the tilapia for our Friday/Saturday night dinners and she did not forget the bucket of Margaritas. Some things are clearly more important than others.

All that said, we were off to a bit of a weird start as one thing led to another and my hub and I were there in the house by our lonesomes for a couple of hours before our friends actually arrived. After getting unpacked and settled in, he retired for a nap and I settled in with a book. It wasn't more than 5 minutes before my reading was interrupted by the plaintive mewing of a very small cat outside a screened door.I answered (I have spoken fluent cat since early childhood) and we held quite the conversation. I approached the screen door triggering hissing and backing away. At least partly feral, this kitten was clearly torn between wanting food and companionship and her strong instinct to stay away from what life had taught her were potentially dangerous human interactions.

Trigger major "Awwwwww, kitty!" reflex.

Folks arrived, the kitten disappeared, and that should have been that. But it wasn't.Unbeknownst to me, my weekend companions were not only who they appeared to be on the surface, but were also channeling manifestations of the implacable Buddha, Snow White, and St. Francis of Assisi.

This meant I found myself in the aisles of a large store some several hours later, being "educated" about the best cat toy, the proper pet carrier, commercial cat food, and tossing around terms such as "operant conditioning".

Fast forward a few more days and we apparently have ourselves a new kitten here at the Agrodolce house. Or more accurately, she (and we think she is a she) has us. She is mostly staying outdoors overnight, but is gradually trusting us enough to spend more and more time indoors despite our noisy blustering around. She has totally savaged her toy,
RIP kitty toy
is exploring more adventurously, jumps up on our table and kitchen counters persistently, and has pooped at least once on the rug. In terms of kitty adoption protocols, I think that means we are hers.

It has been about 18 months since the death of our last cat, the sweet ancient Tigger. Tigger ruled our roost for around 21 years. Hers was a long and happy reign.This unanticipated return to being a catted people means many things, one of which being I won't have as much free time to blog for a while. I will be spending time with the cat, Bijou, holding, petting, feeding, playing and talking with her in order to retool what was obviously a rocky start to her cat/human interactions.
My new editor
As these things go, if I am successful, she will begin to mostly ignore me soon enough and I will be back with more frequent updates. Hopefully, a bit of an absence will find both you and I enjoying the prospect of regular posts enhanced. Until then!!
Meow for now!