A new member of the family – and no drugs required


Only son is no longer the junior member of the family. He has been supplanted by The Kitten. The kitten is very, very sweet. It is black with white bits under its chin and has huge blue eyes. To be fair, only son is not too upset about being supplanted. He has been following the kitten around with assorted pieces of string all weekend.

We’ve been on the trail of a cat for months, but none of the pet shops seemed to have any and we’ve never had any success contacting people on the pet websites. Even nearly half a year later, we still expect to see our old cat, who disappeared just before Christmas, stroll across the garden with a hamster and collie dog, like in those old Disney movies, having been on some amazing adventure. I think he would get on well with the new kitten, who is very chilled out generally, sleeps through the night [unlike any of the human babies in the family] and already seems to have got to grips with the cat litter tray. The kitten is already making herself very much at home.

The only slight problem has been naming her. Everyone seems to have a different idea. I suggested various members of Depeche Mode in order to get my partner on side. He was opposed to having a pet, as he was opposed to all previous cats despite becoming their most ardent defenders over time. “Let’s called it Gore,” I suggested. The kitten pointed its very sweet, serene little face towards me. Gore was perhaps not the first word that came to mind when you looked at her. Daughter one suggested Ringo – she feels his contribution to the Beatles has been severely underrated. Daughter two suggested Billy Howle, after the Agatha Christie actor, although Howle, like Gore, is not what springs to mind when you look at a small bundle of fluff with orb-like blue eyes. Only son suggested an array of different flower names. Daughter three opted for Luna in a blatant attempt to butter up her father. Needless to say no-one liked anyone else’s suggestion, although I was coming around to Billy Howle.

My partner took one look at the kitten and decided he loved her, even without reference to Depeche Mode.

Only son searched around the house for suitable bedding for the kitten. “Look at this,” he said, brandishing a giant fabric mushroom that daughter one made for her GCSE art junk food project. The kitten loved it, but currently prefers to spend most of her time behind the sofa or attacking the washing.

This is her first day in the office and she’s proving a great work companion. She seems to have got the whole work life balance thing down to a t as well: she mainly sleeps and her response to every strategic suggestion I make is generally positive.

I’m planning to watch and learn.

*Mum on the run is Mandy Garner, editor of Workingmums.co.uk.

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