Hospitality cats up and down the country have cleared their diaries to solely focus on their human counterparts as B&B’s Guest Houses and Hotels close. Meet Spud and collegues in this weeks Ednovean Diary with a profile fo our famous incumbents over the years. I bet home working cats up and down the country are hard at work too, manning computor key board and airing washing baskets, fully engaged in their new roles. In the mean time how is our hospitality cat adapting to his new role?
It feels very strange indeed at Ednovean Farm, to be closed on beautiful spring days because of the Corona virus outbreak. The very idea of self isolation and social distancing are the very antithesis or our normal cheerful gregarious nature.
The feline Maitre d’
How is the resting Maître d’ and what is the role of the small furry presence who quietly works at the heart of most B&B’s? That diffident but welcoming feline who will man (well cat to be precise) the car park and sympathetically greet weary travellers, instantly bringing a cosy link to a home that may be the other side of the world. How does the purring welcoming friend who will escort you around the garden and pose for holiday snaps feell now?
So what of our little Maître d’ Spud Cat, as we shelter from Carona virus?
Well he has expanded his role as a house and stable cat and he’s still busy making personal appearances on our social media pages. But as Mr B remarked on our Instagram feed “He seldom gets out of bed for less than twenty mice!” So for the time being and we have his sole attention.
Ednovean Farm’s hospitality cat’s role of honour
Let me introduce you our current noble incumbent Spud Cat Esq. A cat who has so many friends around the world now, but who came from humble origins. He was little bigger than a kitten when he was ingloriously dumped outside our gate. He spent a terrified week hiding in the hedge while he tried to work out his future. He was a small half seen white shadow, skipping through the bushes and scrumping bowls of milk unaccountably left in his orbit. At the end of the first week it started to rain and at the end of the first week he came to a decision! He sat down outside our front door and wailed to come in. Spud-cat had decided on a home Spud had also passed an interview with our incumbent much loved Tom-cat – Ollie.
Ollie a model for the hospitality cat
Ollie was a beautiful ginger tom that came from the RSPCA. One thing Charles had found a bonus about Ollie was the sign on his cage saying “Not to be rehomed with another cat” as I have a slight a cat collecting habit! We paid our £40 ponds transfer fee and two weeks later we collected Ollie!
When Ollie finally finished his days at Ednovean Farm we had lovely healing e-mails from people working as far away as offices in New York who loved the idea of a ginger tom cat sitting in the sun in Cornwall amongst their stressful lives. You can follow the adventures of Ollie cat here in my old Ednovean Diary cira 2010
So Spud was unique in persuading Ollie the he was up to the role of a very junior hospitality cat. He shadowed his mentor assiduously for a few years, with Ollie behaving like an enraged old Colonel at times as Spud learnt his trade.
Wilbur a ferral cat’s story
Before I finish my cat stories for today I must mention Wilbur. Wilbur was a feline “will of the wisp” (outsized) that lived on the edge of our Ednovean lives for over sixteen years. He was determinedly feral and sparred with Ollie over the years before finally leaving probably in a huff. Many years later he limped back again with what looked like a broken tail and damaged pelvis. We had no chance of catching him for treatment, so left out food and he moved into the garden room for the winter. By the spring he was plump and well again although his tail was never quite right. Three or four years followed of discreet, dignified retirement in which he rejected all overtures of friendship but arrived punctually for all meal times.
Until one day he didn’t come and the garden room that had become his sanctuary was empty. Wilbur died as he lived making his own choices in life. We still missed seeing the old boy sunning himself around the courtyard – the nearly hospitality cat!
And Louis – Spud-Cat’s final mentor
Louis is a tiny Burmese with cabriole front legs and the loudest wail this side of Penzance I fancy. Louis retired from a five star B&B and was delivered in a cat carrier aged twelve. Spud was stunned to find another cat in his house when he came home from mousing and it must be said he wasn’t amused! Fortunately Spud is very big and Louis is very small so Louis spent a few days hiding behind the sideboard while they worked out mutally agreeable terms and condition.
After a week of hostilities I finally had enough and put them to bed for the night together in the cat quarters aka our shower room. In the morning they were curled up together in the same bed blinking sleepily at me. They have remained firm friends ever since.
Louis is seventeen now and has retired to light duties. He has also let it be know that he needs to sleep on the human bed each night in his dotage!
But Spud assiduously washes his ears for him on most days to keep him in trim.
The socially mobile hospitality cat!
Louis-cat was Spuds final mentor and he likes to think he has polished Spuds performance as a hospitality cat along with his somewhat dubious hunting skills.
So there you have it. Spud-cats journey from a frightened abandoned cat to becoming the Ednovean Farm social media ambassador and fully qualified hospitality cat. Stay safe and hoping to see you all again very soon in better times ahead. How is your cat coping with home working, do let us know!?