Friday, 30 October 2020



On a lovely Saturday afternoon I start to put out a can of paint, a large brush and a can opener on an old newspaper. I intent to paint the floor of the hallway in bright red.

Recognize this? Every couple of years (for some even every couple of months) I choose an other colour to paint my room. Since I like bright colours and large colour contrasts, I change from cobalt blue to black and white and now to red.

I like red. In my house there are three red cats; one European short hair female and two Burmese males. Besides them there is a multi-colored female with a lot of red in her fur coat. I regularly dye my hear red. My couch is red and there are several red accents in the room. Now it's time to turn the floor red.

Carefully I remove all cats and close the door firmly behind me. Than I go to work. The hallway isn't all that large, less than 3 square meters, so it isn't a whole lot of work. When I'm nearly finished, I'm forced to open the living room door. I can't paint under my feet.

Slowly I open the door just a little bit. I can't see much, but it seems there are no cats around. So I push the door open a bit further and look around the corner. Sure enough, not a cat in sight. I get on my knees, pull the door tightly against me and start to paint the last bit.

When I'm almost done, Zohra jumps on my back. In shock reaction I try to get up, hoping she'll jump back into the room. Alas, she's a real Burmese and she climbs fast onto my shoulder. Then she the wrong side. I cry out: Noooo!!!!, but Zohra lays fully stretched in the red paint. Front legs spread, chin and chest on the floor.

For a moment bewildered, we sit still, then the sound of a tiny mew. I grab Zohra by the scruff of her neck, get on my feet and race to the bathroom. I fill the washbasin with lukewarm water and lower her into it. I's unbelievable how much red water washes out. Several times I need to get clean water, rince the cat and hold her firmly at the same time. This is beneath her and she lets me hear it as loudly as she can.

When the water stays clean, I wrap her in a towel. From sheer relief, and probably also from exhaustion, she lets me carry her around. I call the cats in (as far as they haven't been called in by the roaring), close the window and turn up the heat.

Than I start to rub her dry. She likes that, so she remains on my lap. When I turn her over to dry her belly, I can't believe my eyes. Zohra isn't lilac anymore. Her front legs, her chest, her chin and bottom jaw, her whiskers at the tips and her hind paws are bright red.

When she starts to dry herself and I watch from a little distance, I can't help but laugh. It's such a ridicules sight. I get my camera and shoot pictures as reminders throughout eternity.

Luckily Zohra has had no ill effects or trauma's because of her adventure. The other cats haven't sniggered at her from behind their paws. Now, five months later you can't see a thing, she's just lilac again.

If you have a paint job and you don't have anyone who will put him/her up for a night: good luck!

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