Plus chaud que la moyenne

Whoever said “Truth is stranger than fiction” certainly knew what they were talking about (and had probably met Louis Catorze). So, when Cat Daddy came back from the bar and told me that he’d seen a memorial on the wall paying homage to a previous pub cat, I believed him. I also believed him when he said that the cat was called, erm, Craig David. (Non-Brits: ask your slightly older British friends.)

Photo from

Craig David was a stray who turned up one day at the Free Trade Inn in Newcastle and never left. He soon became an iconic feature of the pub, and customers would often find him asleep on a bar stool or on top of the jukebox. There was quite an outpouring of grief from the community when he passed away after four years of living his best life at the pub, and the staff decided to pay tribute with a commemorative blue plaque on the wall:

They met the cat on Monday, gave him a few treats on Tuesday, he had moved in by Wednesday …

They even sell Craig David t-shirts – and, yes, we bought one:

Craig David all over your (shirt).

I sometimes think of what we should do to honour Catorze when he is no longer here. But, since the little sod was forged in the raging fires of The Underworld, he will probably outlast every single one of us. And, just as Earth implodes, he will hop onto a spacecraft and return to his home planet, having accomplished his mission here.

Why were you screaming loudly late last night? Can you fill me in?

Speaking of hellfires, later today we will be heading back to the inferno that is London, having had a relatively lucky escape here in that tiny strip of England that wasn’t in the Red Zone. Cat Daddy tried to cheer himself up by Googling places hotter than London, only to feel worse when he discovered that Seville, Cairo and Addis Ababa are all COOLER.

Much has been made of animals in the heat, with advice involving extra water and fans but, unbelievably, this is one area where I trust Catorze to do the right thing for himself, however insane it may seem to me. After all, he has ninety-nine problems but a heat-related illness ain’t one.

As ever, there is online panic, with people on my local neighbourhood forum telling cat owners to keep cats indoors. However, I disagree. Unlike dogs, who would blindly follow their owners across hot lava if they had to (and even if they didn’t have to), cats won’t do things that they don’t want to do. Also, if cats are used to going outside and they enjoy it, keeping them in would drive them round the bend; we would be able to hear Catorze’s screaming even from up here. So we have just told our neighbours to feed him smaller portions, keep an closer eye on the levels of his one water glass, and let him do as he wants. (He doesn’t need extra water glasses; trust me, he won’t drink from them. And, when the fan is switched on, his ears flick back and he moves away.)

Incidentally, our chat-sitteur reported that Sa Maj was the perfect angel during our absence, with no pukes, no rats and no 3am parkour. For heaven’s sake.

20 thoughts on “Plus chaud que la moyenne

  1. Yes – tonight the PBS Newshour pointed out that part of France was headed for 107. It really is terrible…for the humans and the animals, and I think it was in London – the airport runways melted.

    Liked by 1 person

      1. At our other home in West Virginia, a cat lady with something like 14 cats died. The story I heard was that her son just threw all the cats outside. Fortunately, the people on the other side of the alley from us are feeding them and another man nearby opened his garage for them so they would have shelter.

        Liked by 2 people

  2. Love this story about Craig David and yes, I would buy that t-shirt too… 🙂
    Ok, 3:20 and too hot to sleep… how can I fall asleep, please?

    Liked by 2 people

      1. The area where I live, de Kempen (the Campine), is one of the hottest and driest places in Belgium. We’ll probably hitting the 40ºC mark today.

        Liked by 1 person

  3. Craig David is just gorgeous, I would have been sad, too, when he died. Miss Penny and I are not liking the heat (the highest I saw so far was 38 and the humidity is atrocious) but I am not yet turning on the air conditioning, it’d be creating more of the very problem it’d be trying to solve.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. I feel the same about air conditioning! I tried Googling “eco air conditioning units” but I imagine that’s the same as looking for fat-free butter or sugar-free sugar!

      Liked by 2 people

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