Worry Yourself Thin!

You’ve tried Atkins; now try the Bertie Plan Diet, guaranteed weight loss in days!

Day One: cat disappears. He’s pulled this trick before, so you don’t worry too much; just an hour or so’s walk in the evening, calling his name. Tossing and turning in the night, hoping to hear the catflap go, also helps burn those calories.

Day Two: no sign. Walk a couple of miles, calling him. Walk a mile or so posting notes into neighbours’ houses. Walk another couple of miles, with more hills this time, calling him. Lose appetite. Toss and turn.

Day Three: still no sign. Wake at four and go for another walk to call him. Walk three miles or so putting up posters around the town. Swear to fervently god/gods/universe that you’ll give up cake and biscuits, or even alcohol, for a month if he returns safely. Put up more posters. Creep around houses of weekenders and call into their sheds, listening desperately for an answering cry, in case they’ve locked him in and gone away. Break into neighbouring gardens and derelict industrial sites to call him. Walk a few more miles.

Day Four: cat is found. Walk four or five miles round the town taking down posters, in the rain. Resist celebrating his safe return with a cake and/or a drink; remember that last time he went AWOL, you – or to be more exact your wife – broke the pact with the universe, which is probably why he disappeared this time. Consider buying a GPS Cat Location system; regardless of whether it works, you’re not going to be able to afford cake or alcohol for months. So, not only have you lost at least a stone in four days, you’re going to carry on dropping those pounds. Cat, meanwhile, eats himself sick on chicken pieces…

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7 thoughts on “Worry Yourself Thin!

  1. When we moved to Spain our cat “Tiggy” came with us. She is a silver Somali cat and back in the U.K. was queen of her territory.
    We kept her confined to the house and garden for a while but, of course, she needed to discover further afield.
    What we didn’t know, (but soon found out), was that our new surroundings contained quite a number of ferral cats living wild in the fields around us.
    The fields are also full of drains, gullies and water chanels for the olive and orange groves.
    She went missing one day. We searched fields, roadsides and rambalas for two days. On the third day we were about to go out again in the late afternoon with posters and pictures for neighbours, when I heard a pathetic squeeky sound. There she was by the patio door. She looked like she had been dragged through a hedge and then gone ten rounds with the meanest cat in the area. She smelled rotten.
    She was very thirsty but refused food. We took her to the vets and she was kept in for two days on a drip. She has since then suffered from kidney problems and has to have special food and a daily pill.
    That was all 5 years ago and she is now 14 years old.

  2. I’m very glad the cat came back. I worry about mine these days as he’s daft, fat, and blind in one eye and I hate it when he disappears. Hope you sleep better now!

  3. If you’re going to be fit to host the West Country gathering you might need to invest in whatever technology will reduce the stress ! Good to hear he’s come home.

  4. Great story! Glad the cat came home. My neighbour has a friendly Siamese cat “Bruno” who’s allowed to wander the apartment building free without a collar or nametag but has somehow never got lost or stolen. (Bruno hits my wife and I up for cat treats whenever we arrive.)

    As kids, my sister and I each got to select a kitten from my uncle’s farm to take home as pets. Sis picked the type of kitten one would expect a little girl to choose: “Veruca” – solid white, blue eyes, pink nose, agressive and hissy like her namesake. I decided to go with the complete opposite: “Jinx” – solid black, runt of the litter, runny eyes, no tail, tried to hide from me.
    Veruca once escaped through a loose screen window – somehow surviving unscathed a six meter fall to the pavement! – and disappeared for two weeks. While Veruca was wearing a nametag, she was found without it. Turns out she had camped out on the patio of a house two city blocks away. Veruca lived to age 16, Jinx all the way to age 22.

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