Well, that was a bit of a week!


Buddy back at homeIt started with the sad news that our cat Buddy is blind and deaf, poor thing. He had a funny turn, standing on the stairs and yowling like the world was ending. When Bex went to him he jumped a mile, totally taken by surprise. Then he bumped into the doorway, and walked right into Barney the dog.

Apparently, he has two detached retinas, caused by high blood pressure. The deafness is probably just due to old age and we weren't aware of it as cats are so good at using their other senses.

We realised that he would have to become an indoor cat – tough for a feisty free spirit who has always enjoyed the woods alongside our garden. He once brought home a pheasant he had caught as a present for me – he tried to get it through the cat flap even though it was bigger than him! When he was younger he would catch so many small birds and mice that I put a collar with a bell on him to act as a warning but he soon learnt to hold it still by tucking it under his chin!

But he is old now, and life is different. Except that he managed to get out on Saturday and we couldn't find him anywhere. Without sight or hearing he would be easy prey for a hungry fox – or a car. Our searching showed no sign of him so we put posters on lamp posts near our home, asking people to call if there was any sight of him. By Thursday we had all but given up hope – the nights had turned really cold and there was no news.

Until the phone rang – the woman said her son had driven into the close they live in and was sure he'd seen Buddy. I went straight down there, about quarter of a mile down our road, and after searching for a few minutes… there he was. He fought me as I tried to pick him up – managed to claw and bite me – but of course he had no idea what was happening.

A week later as I write, he is settling back at home but finding his dark and quiet world a bit difficult to accept. At least he safe and sound, and can curl up in his favourite place on the sunny spot on our bed. Just before Buddy's return, I had to cope with Billy going to Canada! He has headed off to fulfil his dream to become a snowboard instructor! He is spending 14 weeks in Jasper, Alberta with a group of like-minded people, spending almost every day on the slopes – it's a hard life for some!

Making sure everything was organised for him took my mind off the fact that he was actually going, but as departure date got closer, I wasn't sure how I would feel. In the end, he went off so happily, excited about such an amazing opportunity, that I was fine – not even a tear at the airport. As any mum knows, all you want is for your children to be happy. Things might change when he is tired, cold, aching all over and missing his mum's roast potatoes, but for now he's like a polar bear in snow, to paraphrase a well known phrase!

With Bex and Charlie back both back at university, the house is quiet, but it gives Olley and me a chance to plan some outings just for us. The emotion continued with a trip to London to watch Les Miserables on the big cinema screen in Leicester Square – I absolutely loved it, and DID shed a tear or two this time! – and then a fabulous day on Sunday enjoying lunch at Ali Keenan's lovely new home, with her partner Colin, Debbie G, Miceal, and Claire and Dan Sutton with their lovely (and amazingly well-behaved) children.

Ali served up a delicious meal and we laughed and chatted for hours. With no children to rush home to, Olley and I were the last to leave, at just before 10pm. What you might call a long lunch. I could get used to this!! I'll keep you updated on how Billy gets on. In the meantime, do take care.

Kathy x


  1. Joanna Downey January 20, 2013 at 2:53 pm -  Reply

    Hello Kathy, I was so sorry to read about Buddy, he must be really confused and I only hope that his other senses allow him to realise that he’s still at home with those who love him. I have also been in the situation of having to keep an animal indoors for it’s safety and it took a great deal of concentration from all the family to keep him away from open doors and windows. I can empathise as well with how you must feel in a “child free” house, our younger daughter moved out last month and it’s been very strange without her. It wasn’t the same when our girls went to university because of they, and their washing, came back regularly! The upside is that after all those years of being busy with the children and their lives you now have time to do other things. With the return to routine after Christmas I felt really guilty that I didn’t have much to do which is ridiculous. Now that I’m getting used to it being the two of us again I’m starting to make plans, not mind-blowing huge ones just those to do with the house, garden and holidays. You’re obviously very proud of your three and Billy’s going to have an amazing adventure, I’m very impressed that you held it together at the airport and as you said it’s all we want to know is that our children are happy. Stay safe in this weather! Love Jo x

  2. Jennie January 20, 2013 at 4:32 pm -  Reply

    Oh dear poor Buddy. It will take time for him to adapt. I’m so glad yy found him when he went missing, it just have been awful for all of you. Have you considered some Feliway diffusers? They’re a cat pheromone and really do work and calm frightened and anxious cats. From vets or online. You need to ensure everything’s in the same place too and remove obvious hazards. He’ll still feel vibrations so stomping around when you’re approaching will help. Other than that it’s love and stability he needs. A lot to cope with though, especially with Billy away too. Life keeps changing. Lots of love and gentle kisses for Buddy, and all of you keep snuggly and safe in this snowy weather.xxxc

  3. Susan January 21, 2013 at 7:57 pm -  Reply

    Hi Kathy,
    That was quite a week! I am so sorry to hear about Buddy. What a lovely name too. It must be really quite scary for him to have no hearing or sight. I am also very pleased though that Billy got away to Canada ok! Did he get away before the snow here?! I hope you’ve been ok. You did well keeping it together and as you say you just want everyone to be happy. Hope he stays safe and enjoys himself. Glad you had a great long lunch lol at Ali’s!
    Hope you have a good week,
    Susan x

  4. kathy February 12, 2013 at 9:23 pm -  Reply

    Hello all.
    Just a quick note to say that Buddy is coping well and doing ok. He gets around the house really well – jumping up to his favourtie resting places even though he can’t see anything. he has go used to his litter trays and we don’t have too many accidents any more and he has become much more cuddly than he used to be, which is lovely for all of us. So hopefully he is happy, and can be with us for a while longer.
    best wishes
    Kathy x

  5. liz March 6, 2013 at 12:30 am -  Reply

    So glad Buddy doing well.

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