We held off on having our Christmas holiday and gift giving this year as we waited for our daughter to be able to come and join us. As she works in Africa on a rotational basis, she was due to come to see us on Jan 15 so our plans were to have Christmas the weekend of the 18Th and 19Th, not quite a month after the real deal. Presents were all bought and ready, but we were going to wait to decorate until that weekend.
Part of this reasoning was due to her cat. Yes, how silly to plan things around a cat but her cat and our two cats are all family members too and it is fun to watch their reactions to different things. Her cat has never had a Christmas tree. As he is incredibly smart and curious and oddly clumsy, we figured he’d just go nuts over the Christmas tree and fully expected him to climb into it and bat things off of it and just generally do mayhem, which we planned to control by keeping doors closed if necessary and watching carefully – with the camera of course.
So our daughter arrives on time. As luck would have it, my husband was out of town on a business trip and got back late on Thursday night so we had planned to put up the tree on Thursday but couldn’t. Friday night, everyone was just too tired by the time the usual shopping had been done and hubby home for work and all. Finally Saturday, we managed to pull everything out of the attic/loft and get the tree put up in the living room.
All the cats were milling around it didn’t take long for our two cats to go “oh yea, we remember this – not much going on that is for us” and they promptly went somewhere warm and went to sleep. My daughter’s cat was interested in the proceedings. He wandered underneath the tree a couple of times, stretched up into it once and then sat down beside it to watch and see what was happening. As we expected a great deal of interest, we took care to only pull out the ornaments that were not breakable and the few breakable ones we got out, we put closer to the top of the tree to protect them.
The entire time we are decorating, her cat is just sitting and watching. With so little reaction, we even finally put a few breakable glass ornaments on the bottom and nada, nothing. Then we pulled out the tinsel garland. Surely he will take interest in this because he loves tinsel and loves to eat it! But as we are winding it around the tree, he is not even watching now, preferring to look out in the garden as there are squirrels out there.
The tree is decorated and the lights are on and the cats are totally ignoring the entire thing. How anti-climatic! We had expected a much bigger response, a much bigger interest, a lot more laughs and yelling and shouting and such but he was just not interested. Presents go under the tree and the most he does is walk around them and take a sniff here and there. Wow, did we ever call this one wrong.
Too late for actual opening of presents so we waited until around noon the next day to open our presents. All cats were present and the best thing, they thought, were a few empty boxes. Again, no interest in the tree or the ornaments or the tinsel. But it was a very nice Christmas for us, present wise and companion wise and we had a good time.
Next day, Monday, my husband is off on another business trip so I take all the ornaments off the tree and pack away everything for next year. no cats even bother to come watch this dismantling of our 3 day Christmas. No batting of the ornaments, no climbing the tree, no fighting the tinsel, no eating the papers, nothing. My daughter’s cat is very smart and clever though. Could he be waiting for next year because the others told him it usually lasts much longer and he can do a lot more damage then? who knows.