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Crazy Camp(ing)


This is a live report from a very special place.

Today, I’m blogging from Crazy Camp.

Ruhrtalsocken 01

My stay at Crazy Camp began last Saturday, and it will last until the upcoming Saturday, which is only three days away (yay!). Crazy Camp is set up atmy parents’, and there is only one activity scheduled regularly:

Look after the cats.


The brown tiger on the left is the tom, the white-brown one on the right is the cat. Both have lived in our household for about 12 years (they’re approximately 14 years old, but we can’t say for certain). While the cat came from the animal shelter, the tom was adopted from a cat rescue station.

Now, I love the cats. Both of them. The tom and I get along a bit better than the cat and me, but I really love cats and looking after them wouldn’t be so bad. Except that, especially when my parents are away, hell breaks loose regularly.

The cat got it into her head that she is scared to death by the tom, and will start hissing and spitting and running for cover under my parents’ bed as soon as they are in the same room. This got right to the tom’s head, who starts bullying her every now and then by attacking her, jumping at her, not letting her eat or let her use the litter box.

Thus, this week’s challenge is not only to ensure that they won’t rip each other’s head off, but also to somehow (HOW?!?) maintain a little bit of peace … So far, they have behaved pretty well though. The cat will get out from under the bed at times and uses the litter box on her own (she won’t dig though, because the scratching will attract the tom’s attention, but that’s no problem really). She will eat if being carried to the bowl and today, she even joined the tom at breakfast for a bit (there wasn’t even a fight).

Ruhrtalsocken 02

The tom on the other hand provides a different kind of entertainment. Apart from normal Crazy Cat behaviour (running around as if haunted by the Wild Hunt, wanting to be let out and in frequently, leading you to the bowl five times a day to let you explain that yes there is still some food left and that the empty bowls will be refilled later), he so far has successfully prevented me from getting more than 3-4 hours than sleep in one setting. He achieves that by making loud noises, such as purring/meowing (2x), jumping on the bedroom cupboard (1x) and, most of all, throwing up noisily somewhere in the early morning hours (2x on the thick brown carpet, 1x on a towel, 1x in the bathroom (you’ve gotta be thankful for the little things). And yes you’d better be getting up if you hear that special noise, because you don’t know what he is vomiting onto and it might be easier to clean now than later).

Ruhrtalsocken 03

To keep myself sane, I spend a couple of hours at home (Philipp’s and my home) and work on my dissertation. I also brought a ton of knitting to my parents’ place. I brought:

  • my Amiga cardigan (HAHAHAHA)
  • the swatch for the “Margot” Sweater
  • yarn for another dishcloth (I started it already)
  • the yarn from the desastrous “Shiresocks”

So far, the new socks got worked on steadily (while reading lots and lots of the Yarn Harlot’s blog entries and watching Gronkh’s Let’s Play of “Fran Bow”) and I have really come to love the result.

Ruhrtalsocken 04

I cast on 64 stitches with 2,5mm needles and started a k1tbl,p1 rib, decreasing evenly after 4 rows until I got 56 stitches on the needle. Now I am purling all the blue stitches and knit the rest – which means that I am indeed knittig Kebnekaise socks (link to pattern page). I really, really love them, and after returning to what I have come to call the CCC (Crazy Cat Camp) after a few hours at home, I find that I am more patient with them both.

But man, I’ll be glad when I’m home again …

2 thoughts on “Crazy Camp(ing)

  1. Those cats have issues!!! How have they managed to stay together for 12 years!? If he is sicking up, I think you may be over-feeding him? I discovered mine did that when I decided to be very generous. Now he just gets to look at the empty bowl… 😀 I hope they behave themselves a bit better soon, for your sake!

    • The true answer is … There have always been problems from time to time. A few years ago, the cat practically lived on the kitchen cupboard, because the tom would chase and attack her every time she set a toe out. He’s prey on her behind the door to the bathroom after she went to use the litterbox … It wasn’t pretty. After a couple of weeks, this stopped, though (I don’t remember what my parents did. There was some strange woman coming to our house (a cat psychologist?), who’d declare to my mother that the cat was experiencing a lot of stress and fear (you don’t say ….).)

      The vomiting can have a couple of reasons.
      First, my sister treated him to four (yes, 4) saucers of catmilk a day (I don’t know what got into her …), so that might very likely be one reason. 😉 Second, my sister told me that this has happened before, after one of his running sessions (he’s like a cartoon cat then, really. And he has banged his hat on the walls quite a couple of times and even had some swellings … Maybe we should take my dad’s suggestion and get him a tiny biker helmet.
      Third (and I find this most likely, since E.’s cats have the same problem right now): Winter is coming, and the cats are getting thicker fur.

      I had a couple of rough nights (including cat fights/growling/screeching sounds), but today, I returned home!!! All in all, the cats behaved TONS better than last time I was there; it helped a lot that the cat would come out at times. As soon as my sister walked in today, it was as if there never had been any problem … But she is my sister’s cat, really. Just like the tom and me get along quite well (he’s snuggle up to me every evening and also sleep next to me, purring loudly, before getting on one of his cushions after I went to sleep).

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