Tuesday, 21 August 2012

14/8/12 London

Today, my friend and I had a fantastic day trip to London. We walked miles, seeing all the sights in the glorious sunshine. We visited the British Museum, Covent Garden, Leicester Square (twice due to map reading difficulties resulting in a slight, circular tour) and finished with the Tate Modern Gallery.

Later that night my feet were so painful I couldn't wait to take my shoes and socks off and lay, half unconscious on the settee (ok, slight exaggeration) sipping tea to revive me suitably to make it up the stairs to bed.

Bubbles was very unsympathetic to my foot problem, thinking it a great game to bounce on my bare feet in  rugby tackle style as I was walking up the stairs! Well, I had woken her at a most unsociable hour this morning to catch the train at the crack of dawn!

13/8/12 Burning The Fat

Usually, one of my favourite occupations is "chewing the fat;" i.e. having a good old chin wag, however, as I have recently been inspired by the super slim, toned, muscular athletes competing in the Olympic Games, I feel I must do better with my fitness regime, therefore, am now busy "burning the fat!"

This involved going for a mile long, non-stop run, which I am very proud of and which (according to my pedometer's calculations) informs me that I have burned off 1000 calories, the equivalent of a small pizza!

Excellent! I am very impressed with myself and forgive myself the naughty custard cream, which I inadvertently ate whilst waiting for the kettle to boil, post run.

Bubbles eyed me very suspiciously when I returned, sweating and panting from my exercise. In fact, she spent several minutes sniffing my legs then pulled a rather disgusted face, wrinkling her nose to show her teeh in a kind of "Ooh yuk" expression. Well I suppose sweat doesn't really smell very nice!

I am now to be restrained in all manner of food temptations! Bubbles is pleased with my new fitness plan, as it includes lots of delicious mackerel and tuna fish, which she is able to (sometimes) share!

Friday, 17 August 2012

12/8/12 Olympic Games London 2012 Closing Ceremony

Tonight, we all sat together in the lounge watching the Olympic Games Closing Ceremony, which, I must say I thought was fantastic. Bubbles lounged on the back of the settee enjoying the TV viewing (I think she was intrigued by the giant octopus):

After all the exciting events of the Olympic Games, I think my top three excellent Olympic moments would be (in this order):

1) Tom Daley winning a bronze medal for his diving

2) The tense sailing race between Australia and Spain, where the Australian captain was swept out of the boat, rescued by her crew & they kept going!

3) Usain Bolt and the Jamaican team winning Gold, Silver & Bronze medals all in the one race

I wonder what my readers favourite Olympic events were? Please leave me a comment if you have any favourite Olympic moments you'd like to share!

I also wonder what Bubbles thinks when she watches the Olympic events.... all these crazy humans running or jumping (activities which she enjoys purely for fun!) I wonder what it would be like if we had an animal Olympic Games....


11/8/12 A Fishy Occurence

My Mum came to spend the day with us today. We enjoyed watching the Olympic action on TV and eating a lovely, summery lunch of smoked mackerel fillets with salad and hunks of bread and butter. De - licious!

Bubbles also benefited from the delicious mackerel dinner. She queued up in the kitchen, nose twitching as she smelt the tasty fish being prepared. Then to her delight, received a generous portion in her bowl.

I hope she does not expect this sort of gourmet feast every day, as usually her cat food will just have to do!

10/8/12 Dandelions

The dandelions seem to be coming up bigger than ever in the garden now. It must be all the rain we are having; alternated with blazing sunshine. I think we are getting giant versions of them!

Bubbles doesn't mind; she enjoys sniffing at them as she pads around the garden, enjoying the fresh air when we are able to get into the garden.

Hopefully I will be able to mow the lawn again soon.... as soon as we have enough dry weather for the grass to be mowable!

9/8/12 The Castle

My friend and I decided to make the most of today's unexpected sunshine and embarked on an expedition to the local castle. Taking plenty of water and a good picnic, we soaked up the sun as we walked and enjoyed the spectacular views from the top of the castle hill.

Had I realised it was going to be this hot, I would have worn a sun hat and more sunscreen. As it was, however, I arrived home red faced where I had caught the sun with big, white circles where my sunglasses had been.

I'm sure Bubbles did the cat equivalent of a snigger when she saw me!

8/8/12 Vets

 Today, Bubbles has had a swelling on her lip again, which has flared up probably due to the trauma of the cattery. (As if we didn't feel guilty enough already having sent her there for a week.)

The lip swelling prompted an unwelcome visit to the vets. It goes without saying that Bubbles was HIGHLY UNIMPRESSED! On arrival, thankfully the waiting room was empty so we were whisked into the consultation room right away for the vet to do a swift but thorough examination, taking his own life heroically into his hands as he did so, whilst Bubbles growled and hissed as menacingly as she could whilst being held firmly in a pair of strong gardening gloves. (A necessity since a previous, unfortunate incident involving my other half's hand and Bubbles' sharp teeth!)

A quick jab of something to make the swelling disappear and she was bundled safely back into her cat carrier and off we went. Back at home, the growly cat had disappeared, replaced by a calm, serene creature who blinking prettily, stepped out of the cat carrier, stretched then bounced off upstairs to demand cat treats!

7/8/12 The Blue Planet Aquarium

Today, my friend and I visited The Blue Planet Aquarium in Cheshire. As a lover of the sea and anything to do with marine wildlife I was in my element. The sharks were colossal and the walk through tunnel provided excellent opportunities to examine these magnificent beasts (safely) in close up detail!

We saw Manta rays, Sand sharks, Nurse sharks, Sea horses, Caiman, semi-aquatic snakes and lots of brightly coloured tropical fish. It was mesmerising until.... we came into the "venom" section. A hideous section dedicated to arachnids! Yuk, shudder, shudder!

There was a "Tarantula tower" (a horrible circular glass tube which you could put your head up the middle of, allowing you to come face to face with the creepy eight legged creatures.) I hasten to add that I went nowhere near it! There was also a Goliath bird eating spider (I'm not saying Goliath because it was big; that really is the name of it!) It certainly suited its name though. Curiously, the deadly black widow spider was a tiny thing (though clearly not to be messed with!)

We exited the spider section rather quickly and went to look at some more nice sharks. There certainly was a vast array of creatures big and small and I liked the fact that a lot of the Blue Planet's profits goes on conservation work in the wild. I know if Bubbles set her eyes on any of the pretty fish, conservation would be furthest from her mind; she would be salivating at the prospect of dinner!

6/8/12 The Balloon

My Mum has given me a wicked "Congratulations" pressie, for passing my degree. It is a large, purple helium filled balloon that floats around the living room attached to a piece of pretty, weighted down ribbon.

I think it is fantastic but Bubbles, at first, was not sure!

The balloon arrived by car and was installed in the lounge under Bubbles' watchful cat's eye. She looked on suspiciously while the balloon was removed from its carrier bag; free at last to float up, displaying its full glory at ceiling height. Bubbles glared as the balloon bobbed around on the ceiling for a while. It then became still, swaying only in the occasional draught, as if to taunt her.

The balloon, now currently ensconced in its new home in the corner by the settee, likes to sway gently at the end of its ribbon, quietly minding its own business whilst enjoying its elevated position with views of the lounge room and garden!

At first Bubbles would come into the lounge then stiffen as she caught sight of the air filled imposter, throwing nervous backwards glances as she trotted quickly across the room to her activity centre, where she could hold the highest position, sitting high up, proudly on her platform. Now, however, she has accepted the new balloon as a part of the living room furniture. She happily trots in or out, taking no notice of it whatsoever. A few times while I have been sitting on the settee, she has jumped up onto my knee, leaned forward and carefully pulled at the ribbon with a gentle paw, watching , ears forward with curiosity, as the balloon jiggles merrily in the air.

5/8/12 Hiss

Bubbles is so pleased to have us back from our holidays, she has been sitting next to us constantly on the settee, or going off upstairs to fetch her favourite toy "Hiss" the snake, who she then presents to us in the most dramatic fashion by dragging him down the stairs in her mouth whilst still managing to "Miaow" at the top of her voice!

It is always an honour when Hiss is presented to us, as Bubbles does not hunt mice, therefore, this seems to be her special present to us, in the same way outdoor cats bring mice to their owners (I would MUCH rather be presented with a furry toy snake than an actual partly decapitated mouse!)

At first, I thought she brought Hiss to us, as she wanted us to play a game with her (dangling Hiss for her to pounce and catch him), however, on depositing the snake at our feet, she then lies down, quite content and totally ignores any attempt to play a game!

Sunday, 5 August 2012

30/7/12 - 4/8/12 Saundersfoot Holiday

This week, my other half and I have been on our summer holiday, to Saundersfoot in Pembrokeshire, Wales. While we were away on holiday the results came in for the very final piece of assessed work for my English Language and Literature degree.

I PASSED! YIPPEE! (see the rather excitedly written writing above!)

This excellent news proved a fantastic start to our holiday, where even the heavy rain could not dampen our spirits. Each day brought new and interesting weather conditions; some days we had rain beating down sideways in the morning then a few hours of clear skies before the next onslaught! One day we even had.... wait for it.... SUNSHINE ALL DAY! (Albeit a bit cool and windy, but sunshine nevertheless!)

We enjoyed lots of outdoor activities, including walking along the beautiful, sandy beaches at Saundersfoot, Amroth and Tenby:

We enjoyed pottering around Saundersfoot village and visiting the bustling, beautiful and quaint seaside fishing town of Tenby:

One evening we drove along the coast to watch the surfers at Manorbier. The sea looked cold and grey. For once, even I wasn't tempted with my body board!:

Our week's holiday seemed to go far too quickly, as time always does when you're enjoying yourself.  Soon it was time to pack for our return home.

Bubbles was so glad to see us when we arrived to collect her from the cattery. She had realised a couple of days before we went that we were "planning" a holiday, as animals just always seem to know.

I caught her sitting in various drawers as I left them open when packing, as if she were trying to say "pack me!" I also discovered her lying on top of the suitcase underneath the bed; probably a clever attempt to stop us from using it, therefore, foiling our plans to go on holiday!

Alas for Bubbles her cunning efforts were to no avail and she looked on, mortified, as we packed our things and got her equipment ready for the cattery. During the final packing stages she hid behind the TV in a last ditch attempt to avoid the cattery; by hiding out of reach with the most awful facial expression designed to make us feel like the worst and cruelest owners in the world as we packed her off to the cattery for a week.

On our return, however, all has been forgiven. I awoke this morning in the early hours, to find a very heavy but happy pussy cat lying on top of me purring. She has been investigating the whole house whilst "Miaowing" loudly. No doubt checking all is in order on her return