Weaning didn’t work. Gosh I miss my fluffy.
A: Because I love her.
But B: Probably in large part because she symbolises home comforts and fondest memories of snuggling up in my dressing gown and slippers, cat on lap, sat on the sofa next to a roaring fire, a good book in one hand and a G & T in the other, in my cosy house with my lovely parents.
And C: Almost certainly exaggerated by the fact that, as a general rule, Mexicans don’t like cats.
This passage from C.M.Mayo’s Miraculous Air: Journey of a Thousand Miles through Baja California: the Other Mexico just sums it up perfectly:
“A small, white poodlelike mutt nuzzled our legs. Palomito was his name, the cook said. A calico cat slunk up as well, meowing loudly. And her name? “Gato,” she said. Cat. She broke out laughing at me, that I would ask.”
My host family have three dogs, also ‘poodlelike mutts’, called Gwendy, Cindy (after Lauper, no less!) and Lila. They have also ‘adopted’ a cat from some neighbours who moved away and left it, whom they feed but don’t let into the house. As far as I’m aware, it doesn’t have a name. I call it Gammy, because it’s got gammy eyes. Cute.
It’s a very strange feeling having been here over a month now and having eleven months left. I’m settled but not settled. The highly concentrated mix of unfamiliarity dragging along with the joys and continuous new experiences whizzing by make the passing of time feel very surreal. More than anything, I just keep forgetting it’s February. This is not February weather. After 25 years of highly changeable weather, the wall to wall sunshine and predictable heat plays havoc with my reckoning of time. Every morning my default thought process is still to observe the weather as I would do in England, consider how it differs from the day before, how it compares with the forecast, and how typical it is of the month or season.
Every day here the weather is the same and, therefore, simply not worth mentioning. A month of 25 degree blue-sky scorchers. Not a drop of rain, nor hint of a breeze. Gone without comment…can you imagine??? They don’t even care! Nobody wears shorts or flip flops or mentions the GLORIOUS SUNSHINE. In the park, people flock to the shade; the complete reverse of what you’d find on a sunny day in England. Especially hearing about the awful weather and terrible misfortunes in the UK from the other side of the world, it’s so very strange not to discuss it at all. It’s just another daily reminder of how English I am, and at this point I feel like my enthusiasm for analysing culture probably exacerbates the differences. And so I vow, henceforth, to adore dogs, neglect cats, and ignore the weather.