In case you are wondering why the cat picture today, it’s because I’ve gone completely off-topic this week for our Free For All on Friday and, with apologies to all of our dog lovers, am posting a cat story, featuring a very fine cat indeed.
Please feel free to add your own off-topic posts today if you’d like, just so long as they fall within our community guidelines.
But firstly, welcoming all who have newly joined the community and I hope you’ll enjoy being here among us all.
Why ‘A very fine cat indeed’? This is a quotation from Dr Samuel Johnson (1709-84), the famous writer and critic who compiled the first English Dictionary. This witty conversationalist was devoted to his cat Hodge who lived with him at 17 Gough Square, London. Referring to Hodge, Dr Johnson is reputed to have said ”...but he is a very fine cat indeed…”
And nowadays Dr Johnson’s cat Hodge has a very fine namesake too.
This Hodge is a very important resident at Southwark cathedral, south of the Thames in London, and I’ve just come to know of him via my daughter, who after recently retiring from a career in policing, has started a job with the Church of England in that diocese, and in the course of her work, met this esteemed gentleman at the cathedral.
Hodge is the recent successor (since September 2020) to a cat called Doorkins who turned up as a stray at the cathedral in 2008 and took up residence there, where she was much loved until her death from old age in 2020.
Being without a cat seemed unthinkable after all that time, so a successor was chosen from a local sanctuary, Catcuddles, where Hodge had been rescued after being found in a Woolwich street with a nasty growth on his face which his owners had not addressed. They agreed to surrender him and Hodge received the medical attention which he so urgently needed and made a full recovery. And his next stop was as cathedral cat.
From the sounds of it, Hodge has done what most cats do in their homes, and has taken over its stewardship completely, training his humans to do his bidding. My daughter is now firmly included in his fan following and I’m hoping to go and meet him some time in the not too distant future.
When my niece first saw his picture, she said that “he looks as if he means business”, and I can’t disagree with that.
I hope all our cat lovers enjoyed his story and his pictures. The second one is his gift shop alter ego and apparently sales are brisk!
I also hope that everyone has had a successful week this week. It was really pleasant weather here in the south and it’s been good to have some late warmth and brightness before the days become more autumnal.
Hope you all enjoy a good weekend and are managing to remain cheerful. Take care!