This and That

Random bits of my life

It began with a cat and a dead squirrel…

Posted by Avital Pinnick on June 26, 2012

Cat with Dead Squirrel

We had an interesting evening after today’s course was over. Four of us in the Enterprise Architect course are staying at the Runnymede-on-Thames spa hotel. We got back to the hotel, sat on the terrace for a while, and drank beer. Michael went up to his room but Shalom, Dave, and I decided to go for a walk along the Thames. We photographed some ducks and walked along the Thames River path.

Ducks on Thames

At some point Dave said, “What is that thing? And what does it have in its mouth?” A large black-and-white cat trotted towards us, carrying a dead squirrel. Oddly, it showed no fear. It just trotted past us and continued to the marina, where a few people stood on the dock drinking beer.

Cat with Dead Squirrel Led to Marina

The cat darted into one of the boats and was ejected by the owner almost immediately.

Cat with Dead Squirrel Ejected from Boat

Without dropping the squirrel, the cat continued down the path, over the bridge, to the far side of the marina. The guy who carried the cat out of his boat invited us to look around inside. He’s very proud of his decorating. He showed us a whale vertebra mounted on the wall, from the Faroes, where he worked recently; he found it on the beach.

Boat interior

He showed us a photo of his mother’s family:

Boat interior

and played a home-made slide guitar:

Homemade Slide Guitar

We spent more time chatting with another couple. John, from Scotland, and his Welsh wife (I never did catch her name) have been living in a long boat (actually a narrow boat) since last September. He is an unemployed carpenter and she works in fashion around Oxford Circus in London. Shalom (below) is photographing John’s photo on his phone (I won’t say what it was but you can assume that it’s rather rude). They told us about what it was like to sail up and down the Thames and along the Severn.

Photographing Photo

Dave, from Canada, is on the left side of the photo, with John and his wife:

Couple on Boat

Their kitchen was so organized! I guess it would have to be in such a tiny space.

Kitchen in boat

There are definite advantages to not staying at the Crowne Plaza near Heathrow. You’d never find a narrow boat moored by the airport.

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3 Responses to “It began with a cat and a dead squirrel…”

  1. Wow! That was pretty fascinating how people can live so differently than one imagines. Great photos, as always :) P.S. That cat was showing off it’s catch of the day, lol!

  2. Sharon said

    Great story! Lucky cat.

  3. I have seen the canal boats in Amsterdam, but I never really paid much attention to the ones in the UK – I read a story in either Smithsonian or Nat’l Geographic, years after having lived there, about this boat “culture”. Maybe I should have followed cats around more when I was there? LOL

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