(It's mid-morning; Dave is busy packing prints for shipment. He just got home the evening before from a trip to visit his family in Canada, and is now catching up on the backlog of work that built up while he was away. He hears a familiar sound in the entranceway - yes, it's Boots the Cat coming in through her cat door ...)

Dave: Well, look who's here!

Boots: "Look who's here?" That's what I should be saying! Where did you get to all last week?

Dave: I was visiting my family over in Canada. Didn't I tell you before I left? I'm sure I did ...

Boots: Maybe. I think I vaguely remember hearing you say something about going away for a while, but I guess I was half-asleep.

Dave: Par for the course! Anyway, how have you been?

Boots: Oh, basically OK. It's been pretty quiet around here; nothing much going on.

Dave: That should have suited you just fine. After all, you were kind of upset during the week before I left, what with all the banging and crashing noises coming from my construction work in the studio downstairs!

Boots: That was driving me crazy! You know I don't like banging noises; what were you doing?

Dave: I was working on the ceiling, trying to get it insulated at last. You should have been happy that I was making so much noise; it's going to result in that room being much warmer this coming winter.

Boots: Really? But you've been promising that for years now!

Dave: Yes, I know. But this time I finally got something done. It's not finished yet, but the difficult part is over, and the rest of the ceiling job should take only a couple of days.

Boots: Well, I'll believe that when I see it ...

Dave: Hey, don't be so cynical; don't you remember how bare that room was when I moved in eight years ago? I've done a huge amount of work down there since then!

Boots: But building one little workshop room shouldn't take most of a person's life!

Dave: What do you mean? Ah, I see what you are getting at. Your owner told me a while ago that you were around ten years old, so my construction project has been going on for most of your life!

Boots: Sure. I don't even remember what was there before you started ...

Dave: It's a funny thing to think about; you and I are actually the same age. I didn't realize that before!

Boots: What do you mean? Are you only ten years old?

Dave: No, of course not. I'll be 57 later this year, but that makes us the same age. Perhaps you've heard the common saying that 'One cat year equals seven human years', but modern researchers have a more accurate way of comparing humans with cats or dogs. The way they calculate it, the first two years of a cat's life are about equal to the first twenty-five years of a human's life. Then after that, each cat year is about the same as four human years. Going by that formula, with you being ten and me fifty-seven, we're now the same age!

Boots: I guess that makes sense; after all, I did have children when I was around two years old; not many two-year-old humans can do that!

Dave: No, not many!

Boots: Anyway, when you do get the work finished downstairs, let me know, and I'll drop down and check it out. I'm assuming there will be a place for me to nap?

Dave: Don't worry, your cushion will be back in place right beside the workbench.

Boots: And speaking of naps ... us 57-year-olds need a good nap every now and then ... Seems to me to be about time ... I think I'll use the back of the closet here for this one ...

Dave: See you later!

Boots: (in the closet): Zzzzzzzz Zzzzzzzz


Comments on this story ...

Posted by: Jacques

Welcome back Dave!

I very much enjoyed reading yet another of your great conversations with Boots, your neighbour's cat...

Posted by: Dave

Welcome back Dave!


I wonder, sometimes, if Boots-chan even notices that I'm away. She has free run of the house when I'm out of town, as I leave the cat flap open for her, and neighbour Yamaguchi-san says that he sees her sleeping in the upstairs window on sunny days.

If I were away in the winter, I guess she would notice the lack of a hot carpet, but in this neutral spring/summer season, it musn't make much difference if I'm here or not ...

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