Our house is divided into two cat territories. The first is mom’s room that is solely controlled by cross-eyed Poppy. And the second is my room (of course!) that is shared between three cats: Fat Mansoor, Duja the Siren and Little-Miss-Terror Kiki.
For years, Kiki had been fighting to gain the whole of the territory to no avail. The main spot (the bed) is shared between the two male cats, who due to their seniority had reached a long-time agreement on which spot to sleep on.
Kiki tried more than once to invade the bed and get her own spot, to be either howled at by Duja or slapped back to the floor by Fat Mansoor. Sulking at her defeat, she’d climb the ironing board and wait for the right time to strike back but soon forgets about it and doze off instead.
Although she has no luck in gaining her own territory (yet), Kiki managed to control the whole house during the pandemic.
Kiki’s daily routine starts at 7.30 am as she stands at my door waiting to leave the room. Pushing her aside, I close the door tightly behind me and seek one-eyed Sinan - her favourite victim - to throw outside before unleashing the blind Minotaur.
When it’s too hot, Sinan stupidly opts to get back inside to be chased around the house by Kiki who’d easily sniff out his hiding spot. While running around the house like Theseus in the labyrinth, we try saving Sinan by running after both and shouting instructions like Ariadne: “Here Sinan! I’ll open the door for you!”.
When Sinan is outside in safety, Kiki starts her morning rounds by visiting each room in the house, meowing back at anyone wishing her a good morning. Then she’ll head to the enemy’s territory - mom’s room - to check on Poppy.
Poppy would be nesting on the shelves outside the room as she rarely spends the night in her territory, preferring the living room where she could pick fights with Sinan (Poor Sinan Indeed!).
Like a trained wolf, Kiki would sniff the air to locate Poppy and manage to find her whether she’s hiding in Mom’s room or sitting dead silent on the shelves. This would be the auspicious time to mark her territory by spraying nearby the door, communicating to Poppy not to get too comfy in her own territory as there are future invasion plans cooking.
The funny thing is although Poppy is twice Kiki’s size and can see, she’s so terrified of her that she refuses to leave mom’s room without an escort. Whenever Poppy wants to use the toilet outside or go to the balcony, she’ll pat Mom’s hand and follow her outside, turning her head right and left to make sure that Kiki is not around.
Kiki spends the rest of the morning loitering around the house, rolling over sunny spots on the balcony’s floor, listening carefully to words exchanged across the neighborhood, sniffing the air by mid-day to guess today’s special (Sunday’s fried beef liver is her favourite. She sticks to dad while he has his lunch in order to be fed). When I go out, Kiki would sit on the stairs waiting for me (not out of love of course but to be fed the minute I walk in. We’re talking about pragmatic cats here not sentimental dogs!).
Once the clock strikes 1.30 p.m., it’s time to lock her back in my room and let Sinan inside. Now the indoor cats could sigh in relief as peace and quiet reigns home again. Happy 3rd birthday to my Little Blind Bully!
(The writer is a certified skills trainer and author)