Just some ideas...if you ever babysit a family member's cats, here's how to terrify and bewilder them on their first full day at your house.
1. Screaming Hissy Fit
I was reading my email earlier today, after a morning out at Kaiser, a local teacher store, and Safeway. Suddenly, Millie, basking in the living room window, jumped up, making the blinds smack together, screaming her head off. If you've never heard a cat scream three feet from your ear, count yourself among the lucky.
My butt probably got about three inches off of my chair. My heart took a field trip to my throat, then my toes, and then back home to my chest. My mouth launched itself on a tirade as Millie continued to scream at the cat outside our window. "Millie! Stop it!" I went to comfort her, but quickly pulled my hands back as she continued to growl--loudly--at the cat that had the audacity to be curious about the calico in the window.
After this, I went to check on Bella and Duchess. Duckie had been lounging on my bed before the hissy fit. After, she retreated to safety with her sister. I've hardly seen them since.
There are at least half a dozen cats that have the freedom to roam this part of the apartment complex. I've seen then several times, and I know Millie has, too--this is the first time she's screamed like that.
2. Haul Out the Hoover
I've been out of town the last two weekends, and the weekend before that, I had company (Summer), so it's been a while before I've done a good, deep cleaning of the apartment. I knew that I'd have to get down and dirty (pardon the pun) during break. I just can't stand a nasty apartment.
Bella and Duchess have been, of course, under my bed. I figured I'd clean my room first, to get it over with. But no one likes a big, scary vaccuum cleaner being thrust around, into their special hiding spot. Both girls came out from under the bed, looking bewildered. They hung out in the 2nd bedroom for a bit. As soon as I was finished...back they both went.
I'm sure, once I settle down tonight, they will venture out some more. Last night I slept on my pull-out sofa, and while I was reading, both Bella and Duchess came out, one at a time, to peer at me from behind the chair. This morning, there was a little mouse toy on the floor where it had not been the night before, and there is evidence that the litter box has been in use.
In the meantime, Mom and Dad are currently in the air...I imagine by now they are somewhere over Canada, heading towards the north pole on their way to Frankfurt. When they get to Venice, they'll have plenty of blog updates to read. Maybe later I'll post some pictures. : )