|October continues to be unseasonably warm, my vegetable casks continue to pump out tomatoes, and the kittens grow larger and bolder as they sup on the smaller rodents around the farm. I still find it a little disconcerting to be followed down the driveway or out into the paddocks by a line of cats, almost like an image from Wanda Gág’s classic children’s book Millions of Cats. |
They come to visit us at the villa more often, and even rub themselves against Munson’s legs. The collision between dog and cat body language is fascinating to watch as ever; Munson I think has just decided that these foreign puppies are a bit strange, but they still smell interesting.
The Munsoneers left a cardboard wine carton out on the lawn which the cats often as a warm but shady snoozing spot. I’d borrowed some binoculars and tripod from Brent to do some star-gazing but the apparatus has ended up at our kitchen window, trained on the box. Gustav stalks the kittens remotely to see which one or pair has taken up residence from hour to hour.
When I take Munson out for a walk he likes to check out the box as well – it’s only big enough for his head, so if there’s a kitten in there already they don’t always appreciate Munson’s re-enactment of some Jurassic Park scene where a T-Rex head bursts through a bedroom window.
I’m no longer concerned about Munson being off-leash around the kittens, not least because they happily seek him out on his own turf. They’re quite used to the other dogs Tosca and Legend giving them a bit of a nibble, and deal with any over-enthusiastic play with a warning hiss. On one occasion I even saw Munson remonstrate with Legend for being too rough with them – he’s clearly carrying on his Sydney Park tradition of shepherding pups through difficult times.
|In the photos above Munson has a leash because we’ve got free-range chickens about, and in this case they’re a hopeless distraction when I’m trying to get a nice portrait of him with Griff – but can I get the two of them to look in the same direction at the same time ….? Hopeless!|