Sunday, 26 January 2014

Take Your Cat To Work Day or Eyebrow Idol

I thought that getting a cat would make me less obsessed with my eyebrows. I thought that perhaps, in the absence of a feline friend, my eyebrows had become like two little hairy pets to me, which is why I stroked them so often and worried about them constantly and brought them up in conversation whenever I could...

But no, because now I have a cat and I have still spent this evening trawling the net for my new Eyebrow Idol. First of all, I am aware it's Saturday and it's pretty ridiculous of me to be spending the night in alone, looking at pictures of other people's eyebrows and talking to my cat, but it's a huge improvement on last Saturday which I spent lying on the sofa crying and pouring red wine on my face.

(It wasn't that bad, I actually enjoy crying on my own, which is why I do it so often: I was just a little emotional after the night out I had thought would be my First Rave of 2014 fell through; plus my eyes were all swollen and sore because I'd been rubbing the cat all over my face and I'm allergic to cats quite badly; and THEN I pulled my clothes out of the wardrobe and they had white furry mould growing on them. But Jumanji was on the TV and I'd forgotten what a good film it is! So it was fine in the end.)

Second of all, it's not really my cat it's Chloe's cat, but as I think I might have mentioned, me and Natalie are fostering him for a while because Chloe has become a live-in nanny while she finishes her Masters and the family didn't want her cat.


For now he is our cat and we love him.

I love him so much that on Thursday I took him to work with me. Really, I know you are doubtful but it's true. The thing is that while we LOVE Rushdie (yes, Chloe named him after Salman and yes, he's very literary, see photo at the bottom of this post) we are technically not allowed to have pets either, but I really wanted to look after him and figured that as the landlord never comes round, he would never find out. If the landlord had to come over for some reason, I could just hide Rushdie's food and litter tray and let him outside to do secret wild cat things for a few hours.


Rushdie isn't allowed outside yet, because he's still getting used to the place and he might not be able to find his way home again if we let him out too soon. He is desperate to get out though. The first night he was here he woke me up every hour or so by pawing my head to let him outside. Each time I got up with him, because I thought there might be a problem with his litter or his food or something; and each time he either sat looking out of the window or made me watch him climb into a cardboard box.

The other day I went into the bathroom and heard a strange rustling coming from behind the blinds... I peeked behind and saw Rushdie spreadeagled against the top of the window, trying to escape even though it was only open a tiny crack.


On Wednesday night the landlord told us that in the morning his wife would be coming round to wait in for our new oven. I got the text from Natalie while I was in work and went into a blind panic. Could I hide Rushdie in my room? Ask one of the neighbours to take him? Put him in his cage and hide him in Natalie's car? In the end the Deputy Manager (DIY Colonic) suggested that I bring him to work.

It seemed like the only solution, so the next day I left the flat three hours earlier than I needed to- just to make sure I wasn't still there when the manager's wife arrived- and got on the tube with Rushdie in his little cat carrier. I was nearly crying when Natalie put him in there (I couldn't do it). I was rushing around brushing my teeth and hiding tins of cat food in my wardrobe and he was just meowing and meowing, sat in his little cage, on top of the living room table.

It's funny carrying a cat round with you. To be honest I wish I could always carry a cat round with me, but you just can't.

When I got to work, I put him behind the bar, then in the cellar, then in the manager's flat upstairs. In the end Natalie texted me at 2pm to say the Oven Men had been and gone, so I took Rushdie home on my break.

It was nice of the manager to let me bring my cat to work and put it in his flat, but he still annoys me. On Thursday night he was nowhere to be seen, he was messing about in his flat for hours then he came down and told us that his legs were hurting so he was going to finish early. THEN his friends showed up so he came downstairs and had a drink with them!!!

I can't decide if he is really stupid or really sly.

By the way, for anyone wanting to hear more of DIY Colonic's practical advice (that seems like a mean name and she is really really lovely so I'll stop calling her that), her sister back in Poland has recently invested in a special plastic container, which is a lot easier to use than an old Pepsi bottle.

It was so nice of her to let me bring my cat to work. I actually enjoyed being out of the flat earlier than I needed to be, rather than faffing about at home and then running in late with sore eyes from watching too much television or staring at my laptop. In fact, this week I have been quite busy and I feel so much better for it. It's much nicer than when I waste my time being lazy and procrastinating. This week I had a meeting with one of Glasgow Laura's friends who is a copywriter and now she manages other copywriters. Hopefully she will be able to employ me for a project soon...

Also, this week I met up with the girl behind music and fashion web site House and Heels and we had a really good chat about writing and business. She's given me an idea which will finally enable me to get my Top Secret Project started! I don't want to discuss it on here in case someone steals my idea...

No, it isn't Dial-A-Tramp.

Talking of meetings, a few weeks ago I met up with a Twitter friend who I bonded with over the fact that we both have the same kimono. She has a Parisien boyfriend and goes to Paris every other weekend, I'm jealous. She's been reading my blog for a while and told me that she gets The Fear really badly too. We both confided in each other that recently we have been getting The Fear for No Reason.

A few weeks ago I was just sitting on the couch, drinking tea and minding my own business, when The Fear came over me so suddenly I felt like somebody was shaking me by the shoulders. It's horrible, suddenly feeling like you've done something really massively, insanely awful and wrong and racking your brain, going over every conversation and every social encounter, wondering why The Fear is falling through you like rushes of water, freezing cold then suddenly hot and bubbling and boiling.


I love my new cat. I'm going to call him 'my cat' but if Chloe is reading this then: I haven't stolen him, I just like calling him 'my cat'.

He sleeps on my bed and when I lie on my back he falls asleep on my pelvis which sounds a bit weird but unfortunately at the moment it is the only bit of me flat enough for a cat to sit on. I can't sleep on my back though, so I always remove him gently and curl up on my side, then Rushdie finds the mound in the duvet made by my two feet and rests his head on it. Aaah.

I can see how easy it would be to slip into Full Blown Mad Cat Lady. At night I lie there thinking that while it's lovely to have a little cat sleeping on my bed, it would be even nicer to have eight or nine cats sleeping on my bed, and one or two on my pillow and maybe one on my head like a furry, purring hat.

ALSO before I forget, today I went to a French bakery with Lauren and Beth and it was just like being back in Paris!! It's called Belle Époque and they do breads and cakes, all the cakes lined up in glass cabinets like in a real French pâtisserie. They had macarons and tarte au citron, a black forest gateau cake and their signature Belle Époque creation which has orange confit and chocolate mousse inside. Look, this photo reminds me of the ones I used to take when I first arrived in Paris and couldn't believe all the amazing cakes:

As soon as we sat down, a thunder storm seemed to appear outside before our very eyes, starting smack bang in the middle with just a few rain drops as a quick introduction and then straight into thunder and lightning and rain that made the window look like a wobbling sheet of water,

We sat in the cosy cafe and started with quiche and hot chocolate (it wasn't great, but I think I got over-excited and was imagining Angelina's hot chocolate) then we took a long time deliberating over the cakes. I went for a lemon meringue and I was very happy with my choice. Oh it did make me homesick for Paris, they even sold French cheese and condiments, tinned lentils and the biscuits I used to take for the kids (eat myself) at goûter time and French mustard.

Before I go, do you want to know who my new Eyebrow Idol is?

Priyanka Chopra.

Those are some GREAT BROWS.


  1. Stumbled on your blog through some late night panicked "drama school auditions" Googling, and it's cheered me up immensely and made me actually lol for the first time in ages after some rubbish times. All the London stuff, so true for me too. Absolutely brilliant writing, keep it up!!

    1. Thank you so much, I was worried my blog had gone to shit since I left Paris. Good luck with your drama school auditions!

    2. Thanks!! I've been reading the whole blog - so jealous as I can never keep up blogging for very long - kiiind of makes me want to go be an au pair in Paris as I'm not a fan of the real world either :D Please keep writing, you still have fans!

  2. That is adorable! I'm glad you're taking good care of Chloe's cat. I know a lot of people who would adopt or be asked to take care of someone's pet and don't really live up to the responsibility of actually taking good care of the animal. They would leave them at home all lonely and unloved. Awww. I'm actually a cat person myself, so I'm feeling a little attachment to your kindness with Rushdie. :)

    Vyvian Gorbea

    1. Ah thank you, but if you read on you'll discover that we had to give him away to a new home, because I was moving and Chloe didn't think she would be able to take him for a long time- it was unfair to keep moving him around. I really hope he's happy!!! :(

  3. I think the eyebrows are important features of our faces because they help a lot with our expressions. That's why I completely understand your obsession with them. Hahaha! Anyway, I'm sorry you had to part with Chloe's cat. I know you wouldn't have left him to someone unreliable, so I'm sure he is happy wherever he is. All the best to you! :)

    Charis Amen @ Island Veterinary Group

    1. Thanks for commenting, I often think about Chloe's cat and hope he is ok in his new home... not sure I have it in me to foster more cats and say goodbye again!