Around Osceola

Life in the Cat House


I was awakened by a herd of wild horses rampaging through the bedroom. How big was the herd? From the sound, I’d guess maybe a hundred or more. They galloped out into the hall, circled around and stormed back into the bedroom. By the dim glow of a night light I saw them plainly.

I glanced at the digital clock and its red readout. The time was 3:09 in the morning.

Okay, it was not a herd of wild horses loose in the house. It was two cats chasing each other around for no reason other than the fun of it. Cats are supposed to be known for their stealth. Indeed, they can move without a sound when it suits them. They can also make more noise than a bulldozer knocking over a giant pile of empty tin cans.

I’d say nobody could possible sleep through the racket of such a rampage, but, as it happened, my wife, Vivian, did. Maybe it’s like the people who live right next to a busy railroad track. After a while you become accustomed to the noise. And cats often make a lot of noise.

When one of our cats jumps off something, a table or the bed or the back of the couch, there is a thud that echoes throughout the house. It sounds like somebody dropped a 73-pound watermelon out of a high rising hot air balloon and it hit on a concrete slab. When they run up and down stairs the noise is akin to a 7.9 earthquake.

We are always pleased our cats feel healthy enough to run and play, to chase each other with abandon. I just wish they didn’t decide to do it at 3 in the morning. To be fair to them, they don’t make a run every morning. They normally wait until at least one two-legged member of the household is up and around before they stir. Even then, they usually just get up and go in search of breakfast.

We have no idea what sets them off some mornings, or which one starts it. Perhaps it’s the weather or the phase of the moon or someone in China dropped a chopstick. Whatever it is, they both receive the signal and off they go. Vivian usually gets up before I do. She will be making the morning coffee and can see them flash past on their all out jaunts. I can only hear them except for when they make a loop through the bedroom.

The other morning, with their morning exercise out of the way, they both went back to bed. I, being fully awake, tossed and turned until time for me to get up. By that time they were all curled up and looking totally innocent.

Cats are creatures of habit most of the time.

Then, for no reason known to humankind, they can turn unpredictable. So it is with morning romps. We never know which mornings they will do it or what time they might decide to begin. All we know is when they take off they make a whole lot of noise.


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