Today it was around 50 degrees, so I took advantage of the near balmy temps and straightened up our patio area. I was coatless and shoeless, savoring the sensation of walking barefooted over the varied textures of our yard. I never thought about what I’d brought in with me.
Soon after coming back inside, I noticed our cat Snoopy seemed particularly enamored with my feet. Hmmmmmm, she’s never paid my feet much attention before, not unless they were wiggling tantalizingly beneath the blanket.
I’d checked my feet when I came inside, and there was no poop on ’em. Okay, yes, I apologize to the squeamish, but when you walk barefoot, stuff happens sometimes. I’m not saying I enjoy planting my foot only to find something nasty on my instep, but hey. It just comes with the territory, especially when there are two dogs and who knows how many strays using that territory as their public toilet. Anyway, I’d been on the lookout for anything unsavory, sharp or prickly while taking my barefooted stroll.
Still, there was the cat, her nose almost glued to the bottoms of my feet. This behavior escalated until she was rubbing her head on them, licking the soles and even gently biting them. Our dog Emma sometimes bathes the tootsies, so I’m not unfamiliar with the sensation (though Emma’s tongue is decidely softer than Snoopy’s raspy little tongue). Why this fascination on the part of a cat, though?
Ohhhh…..Wait. I got it. Oh, yeah!
We put old aluminum-framed window screens flat over our pond in the fall in order to keep leaves from falling in it. Well, while removing the screens today, I walked over a couple clumps of catmint plants (nepeta ‘Six Hills Giant’). They are close to the ground right now, just beginning to green up at their bases with new growth, so I was able to just walk on them. In the process, I crushed the leaves and wonderful minty oil anointed the soles of my feet. No wonder that kitty was so interested in them!
The title of this entry is a play on Carl Sandburg wonderfully descriptive little poem, Fog:
The fog comes
on little cat feet.
It sits looking
over harbor and city
on silent haunches
and then moves on.