The Broom ~ did she fly in on it?

The Broom

The broom as a ninja weapon

Every morning like clock-work, I feed my little colony of eight stray cats. A vet tech used to live in one of the condo units near mine and many of them were “trap and release neutered” (T&R). The females have an ear clipped, so that if they’re caught again the rescuers and the vet will know they’ve already been spayed. Our condo is also home to wild Muscovy ducks who are very “food aggressive.” So, I bring “the broom” out with me to ward off the ducks. Trust me, the ducks do not like the broom. When I point it or wave it at them slightly, they waddle away as fast as they can. Hilarious.

My neighbors must think I’m a crazy woman. “Did she fly in on it?”

This morning it was 40 degrees out with the wind coming in off the St. John’s River at about 25 miles per hour. That’s cold in Florida. We think water freezes at 40. It does, doesn’t it? The cats were freaked by the wind, and in a feeding frenzy due to the cold. They know they have to eat up an get some fat on them. I feed them breakfast and a woman in a unit two down from mine feeds them dinner. When they sit, they have that plump shape well-fed house cats have…and that makes my heart happy.

 

hawk

We also have two hawks in the area. I live in a city, not a small one either. Yet, my condo is nestled inside of a wooded area and it sits on a natural pond that is fed and emptied by a creek. There are many natural lakes, ponds, and creeks in Florida…not to mention swampland. Floridians who live in major cities know an alligator may not be far away, or a water moccasin. Florida is pristine beaches, shining resort hotels, surfers, and it’s also untameable. Something I love about the state.

Perhaps due to the cold, the two hawks who hunt the forest area near the pond were circling overhead, above my condo unit. Well, of course…there were eight fat cats eating breakfast right there. And it was cold, so why not snatch an easy meal. Except there’s that crazy woman standing there…and now she’s waving “the broom” in the air in a fighting stance.

Oh, what the neighbors must’ve thought. “Well, in Florida you get all types. You know she writes murder mysteries and writers are strange people anyway.”

 

Assaulted by a Cat ~ I’m Almost Ashamed To Say

Mimzie, our feral cat.
Mimzie, our feral cat.

 

I have several cuts on my arms .

If I wasn’t most definitely in my prime, some might speculate age 39 (ooops my nose is growing) ~ though a lady never should tell her age… At any rate, if I wasn’t well beyond my teenage years, one look at my armss and some might think I was an adolescent cutter. Not so! Not at all.

I have a feral cat named Mimzie and was merely trying to clean her ears. [Shh, don’t tell her I said so, but feral cats are somewhat deranged.]

The upshot is, she got away without me achieving my goal. So, I tired to sneak up on her the next day.  She’s partially deaf, which makes the sneaking up not too difficult, but she’s quick and determined not to be held onto.

You’ll notice her crooked lip-line. That’s due to lost teeth. However, what teeth she’s got left sunk into my arm, fortunately, not too deeply.

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This soon became a two-woman operation. I enlisted the help of my daughter Delayne, and we had to block the staircase so Mimsie couldn’t get up there to hide.

 

 

 

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I can’t help but be reminded of that old meme, “How To Give A Cat A Pill.” Ah, the joys of cat ownership. I promise you, she’s not choking the cat, just trying to hold onto her.

 

 

 

For those of you who would like to lead “cruelty-free” lives (meaning you purchase products that do not test on animals, here’s a short and very incomplete list of affordable companies who sell in drug stores and supermarkets, and do not test on animals.

Cosmetics and Personal Care:

Aveda [Estee Lauder]

Caswell-Massey: fragrance, bath & body – can be purchased on Amazon

Elf Cosmetics: Target, most chain drug stores

Kiss My Face: skin care –  in most chain drug stores and supermarkets

Milani Cosmetics: sold in most chain drug stores

Paul Mitchell Hair Products:  most chain drug stores and beauty supply stores

Physicians Formula: make up – sold in most chain drug stores

Queen Helene: hair products, skin care, personal care – sold in most chain drug stores and supermarkets

Shiff: vitamins, in most chain drug stores and supermarkets

Toms of Maine: toothpaste – in most chain drug stores and supermarkets

Wet ‘n Wild: cosmetics, nail products – in most chain stores and supermarkets

White Rain: hair products, in most chain drug stores and supermarkets

 

Household Products:

Bon Ami: scouring cleanser, sold in supermarkets

Brillo: scouring pad, sold in supermarkets

Nature’s Miracle: pet odor destroyer, PETCO, most pet shops

 

Most of these products are “made in America” and do not have ingredients that will cause cancer, or cause other physical harm. Why do you suppose the other companies test on animals? It’s because they’re using potentially harmful chemicals.

Note: the box must say “cruelty-free” “no animal testing” or have a bunny on it. Most of the companies who a few years ago didn’t test on animals have gone back to testing. Why? Because China requires animal testing to sell in their country and these companies quickly gave up their principles. You’ll notice that most celebrities no longer do “cruelty free” ads. That’s because they’re signed with large cosmetics firms that have gone back to testing. How quickly they too gave up their principles.