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17 October 2014

Flying Cat

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Fully Functional Un-patented Voletube

parcel tape; scissors; marker; kitchen roll innard.
1. first catch your tube
2. cut a strip about 6" long from parcel tape and, using tube as template, mark circle on roll
3. cut circle out and stick to strip - sticky side to sticky side
4. place tube over circle and stick strip down...sticking it over the circle is quite important from the rodent point-of-view as otherwise its fur gets caught and you end up with a slightly balding vole...
5. whip more tape around tube end
6. eeek -squeeky white moosie poses at mouth of tube for purrposes of illustration only
please don't be concerned - no rodents were harmed in the making of this blog...worse luck!
It was a narrow squeak...
Posted on Flying Cat at 20:51


Friday 26th October. Indoors - a scene of tranquil domesticity in the throbbing heart of Anorak Towers, Rolling Acres, Stromness, The World, The Universe....
Mpu seated in front of iMac, aged one year and two months; fpu reclining in the Sittingroom of Serenity doing a Very Simple Crossword. Outdoors - one of several sleet/hail showers batters on the windows.
Suddenly and simultaneously, one blue flash, one tremenjuous thunderclap, one mighty leap of fpu from horizontal to vertical, one squeak, "The computer!"...
Alas too late it was, too late. The blue flash had emanated from the posterior of iMac: this was an ex computer; it had fallen off its perch; it was no more; it had ceased to be.
Two weeks later...
Fpu and FC sit side by side in front of Shiny New iMac, purring with joy, for it is indeed a thing of Great Loveliness and, for a mere £25 extra, has twice as much RAM than iMac Deceased R.I.P.
It was darn lucky that the insurance company paid up so speedily and that BT sent the new wireless hub (free) and Apple the SNiM with amazing promptness, because at least one of us had practically forgotten how to use the thing.
Wouldn't it be wonderful if bipeds could be upgraded with such painless ease...
Posted on Flying Cat at 18:05

Feline Relaxation Techniques

In these purrlous times, you bipeds need all the help you can get from the very best Relaxation Technique Expurrts in the business. To state the blindingly obvious, that's us. To wit (there's no shortage) Marmers Figgy & Effcee (hereinafter to be referred to as MFE) Ltd.
In order to bring the very best illustrations to you, our admiring and needy public, I have been prowling the highways and byways of Orkney with digicam. We do hope these peerless images will prove helpful as your unfettered capitalist system (which, might I point out, helps to keep a roof over my and Marmer's heads, not to mention the supply of whiskas) circles the drain ©USA. As we say here in Rolling Acres, Que Sarah, Sarah.
Now, before you feast your eyes, Soaplady had a QI idea - that we should all start our postings with a classic 5-7-5 haiku.
AUTUMNAL (for mjc)
I have a foreign
policee: I can see Russ
ia from my yard.
Having introduced the Concept Of Calm with the above, here are some paw-picked images to reinforce your deep warm fluffy feeling of Chill Out Bigtime.
Position 1
A true master of relaxation, my pal Marmers soaking up the rays in the Sunroom of Eternity
Castro 2
Position 2
NB look closely to see the very slight change in paw positioning
The Flying Cat 1
Position 3
Bovvered? Am I bovvered? Do I look bovvered? (me not worrying ma furry heid aboot the heidlines)
Loki cute close-up
Position 4
Do not try this one without a padded surface.
FC@full stretch
Position 5
This pose incorpurrates some elements of Catha Yoga©. Not recommended for arthritic cats.
Figgy 1
Position 6
Magnificent Figaro Incarnate (©Jeelie Piece 2008) This is my sofa and I'll purr if I want to.
Figgy 2
Position 7
Flat-out cat with head-lift.
Position 8
Not one for the faint-hearted, Figgy and his Lilo. As long as your lilo knows its place, no problem.
yogacat 1
Position 9
A rather energetic form of Catha Yoga©. It takes years of sitting at the paws of a master to achieve the Basketflip with 380º Necktwist
yogacat 2
Position 10
OM...(Off Mousing)
Nothing whatsoever to do with anything, except we thought, if shortlegsthesheep popped by, she might like to see an Orkney yowe in its native habitat. This troglodytic example has a toilet roll up its bahookie, which is original you must admit.
Disclaimer: No yowe was discomnogurated in the making of this bog.
Posted on Flying Cat at 17:21


You make me make me make me feel like a natural feline. In this season of fruity mellowness there is so much to share - neatly plucked birdies; nicely gralloched rodents; accidental tatties; gargantuan tomatoes and many other delights. Out of the thoughtfulness that is so very moi, I leave out the plucking&gralloching. I know you bipeds suffer from false sensitivities and I have no wish to cause offence. This time.
the berries
My life has been a tapestry of rich and royal hue
an everlasting vision of the everchanging you
a wondrous world of magic in writs of blue and gold - this is where it starts to unravel. I need Muness to sort out the words...and a coat of many colours, yellow-green on every it is working
a tapestry to feel and see, impossible to hold
a tomato on a fivepee piece so tiny to behold
once he reached for somethin golden hanging from a tree (oh don't quibble, just use you imagination for goodness sake!)
once amid the soft silver sadness in the sky I saw a tiny fluttering of sparrows dropping by...
soon within my tapestry along the rugged road...I came upon a green daytide that ebbed as it still flowed
it grew and grew and suddenly, in days of twenty-one
there was a river all of green where once there had been none
it seemed that they had fallen into someone's wicked spell, that made a little tuber grow where none before had fell. (I thinks things are getting out of hand now. Blaming Muness and his songbook would be too easy...)
when you're down and troubled and you need a helping hand...
close your eyes and think of me (it makes you wonder just who's writing this sometimes, with images like that. I must get to the bottom of it...)
is this a lasting treasure? or just a moment's pleasure?
I would go to the ends of the earth...if you lead I will follow anywhere that you take me to. Which, for these Balsam Poplars, could be quite like the ends of the earth judging by their taproots. Book says 'do not plant within 40 metres of a dwelling' surely doesn't apply to the islands...well I won't be here to see it.
soon within the tapestry along the rugged road...(this is what a rather more grownup version of IT's twiglets looks like...within about three metres of dwelling...or less)
you've got to get up every morning with a smile on your face (look closely, the leetle feeshes are smiling...because I can't get at them!)
soon you're going to find you're beautiful as you feel (just got a bit of metamorphosing to do)
hey little fishes, you've got a friend! Don't you know don't you know don't you know, you've got a friend...
they'll hurt you and desert you and take your sole if you let them...but don't you let them...
I iz good pussy?
the light of love is shining in your eyes *prrrrr* will you still love me tomorrow?
What sort of a question is that? Keep on opening the tins...
Now my brain hurts. All this blog grooming is getting too much for a cat. Just trying to scramble through all the detritus to reach the top of the page is a sisyphean task for a delicate wee moggy...oh well, wha daurs wins oot in the end...

Posted on Flying Cat at 21:58

Come Day Go Day, How I wish it were Cruaday

I wouldn't thank you for the buttermilk every day of the week except Sunday, and, as a sensible feline, I try to go easy on the whisky too. I can't speak for my parental units, but one does ones best to restrain them. The road to Hell is paved with good intentions! And possibly quite a lot of Orkney's nicer urban footpaths are paved with slabs from Cruaday, home of the famous Sandwick fishbeds. The Fossil Centre on Burray is home to fishy fossils from here.

information board
a big hole in the hill
a rocky hard place
dragon's tooth marks - far too huge for a Stromness Dragon, thankfully
awaiting sculptors
finished product
giant's bookrest
Ophelia's hair
Swedish colours
all washed up
a thinker's throne (for Tws)
scanning the horizon...

Hoy in the distance. If you can't see Hoy, you're going the wrong way...

Posted on Flying Cat at 17:07

This Train

The last Sanday Sunday of 2006. Who was to know it would be the last chance saloon for hitching a lift on the Sanday Light Railway? On a whim {so I leave you to guess whose idea it was:-} the parental units drove onto the ferry on a dull damp day at the end of August, anticipating An Awfully Big Adventure. They were not disappointed...
SLR shed
Sanday Central
SLR signal box
Sanday Central signal box
SLR signage
signage and a Lewisian lamp post (as in CS, not Isle of)
SLR gate
Level Crossing
SLR diesel leaving
'This train is built for speed now, this train'
SLR track
'Rockin' rollin' ridin' out along the bay
SLR station
'Maybe it is raining where our train will ride' How true. It rained so heavily at one point on the road to Sanday Angora, the wipers were outdone and mpu had to pull over until the shower went through. So unlike this summer...
SLR station bench
Northern Lights platform. Alight here for the Brief Encounter Tearoom...where Celia Johnson and Trevor Howard briefly encountered one another, with gloriously stiff upper lips and buttoned-up emotions, on an endless loop in the Waiting Room.
SLR sig box on loop
'The switchman knew by the engine's moan...'
SLR in shed 1
back at Sanday Central
SLR in shed 2
'This train am bound for glory, this train'
SLR in shed 3
Sanday's own Casey Jones, assisted by a teenage Foden, ran both the diesel and steam units from the engine shed to the Northern Lights halt and the welcoming (and warming) pleasures of the Close Encounters Tearoom. This is where the pu's would have taken bb1 and the Cub+Pineapple the cloud leopard the following year, but alas, by then it was no more. Fortunately the restaurant at Backaskaill more than filled the gap. But no railway to delight children of any age...'There's a new world somewhere they call the promised land' and I hope Casey Jones has found it wherever he is now. Shame it wasn't Sanday...

Posted on Flying Cat at 10:59

Liff's a Beach...Up To The Wire

Bliss was it in that dawn* to be alive,
But to be feline was very heaven!
As the poet once said, with minor improvements. And, speaking of improvements, what with the sun shining day after day, and only the occasional shower to kiss Rolling Acres awake, renovations have been going on apace: the trailer-loads of secondary jungle, land-and-pondweeds and other detritus that have been driven to the dump you just wouldn't believe. I'm quite exhausted just watching...well, you didn't expect me and m'Marmalade Chum to join in...did you? (The correct answer is "no".)
The beach of Pond1 came in for particular attention and has been restored, without recourse to lottery monies, to its former glory, from this weedy mess...
beach before this
beach after

near beach
The accidental rockery has had the treatment too
accidental rockery
and, naturally, after such a strenuous afternoon, fpu had a bit of a sit in The Lost Sitooterie...
and I came along just to show my very fine tummy
loki pure dead gorgeous
However, like another garden before it, there is a metaphorical serpent in the grass. How could any biped do this to two cute kitties? We have been seriously deprived of one of Liff's simple pleasures - birdie hunting - surely a Feline Right. The French would never stand for such an infringement! Jamais! Aux armes kittoyens!
Sadly, our purrtests fell on deaf ears...the Anti-cat Device is now in place, beside the Bird-feeding Station of Opporchancity
anti-cat device
Like a cat on a wire/Like a drunk in a midnight choir/We have tried, in our way, to be free...but to no avail (and, believe me, my chunky chum has done his best)
anti-cat chickenrun
knotted at the top
string of doom
stapled at the bottom
anti-cat staple
but in the end, the sun set on Anorak Towers and we were just happy to be alive...and so are the bl**dy birdies!
*any resemblance to any purrson living or otherwise, is purely unintentional...
Posted on Flying Cat at 18:05

The Great Rolling Acres Tomato Disaster (and a Small Twiglet Update)

Dear Reader, should you ever be tempted to succumb to the blandishments of 'free' seeds with a gardening magazine, I advise you most urgently to think once, think twice and then...DON'T!
Or at least don't plant the whole bally lot. Like Someone did. Nor should you prick your seedlings out so that they lie at the foot of a dwarf wall (lack of sunshine), nor feed recklessly, nor go away for three weeks leaving the watering to a kind friend without requesting regular window-opening.
Because, if you do all of the above, some manner of Tomato Disaster will be the end result...not to mention the mould on walls, windows, sills, floor...
This here is the lank dank jungle of allovertheplace tomato plants (did I mention they are a bushing variety? Well they are so...Gardener's Delight!)
and that orange box is the tomato food and these here are watering cans
GRATD - FC on stone table
and this here...
GRATD - FC jumps off all the falling-down bits
GRATD - FC inspects
oh and this here seems to be...A TOMATO! I want a prize, I want a prize, I found one, I found one
GRATD - FC finds one
a veritable pyramid of juicy fruits
GRATD - cornucopia
oops sorry fpu I didn't mean to knock one off, just wanted a wee furryhug
GRATD - FC knocks one off
the future crop...isn't nature wonderful?
GRATD - not green eggs Dr Zeuss
as me and m'Marmalade Chum were finding ourselves a bit lost in the Sunroom of Eternity, fpu decided to get in there with the machete and tame the jungle
GRATD - the Aftermath
now we can all go in and sit down again without use of map&compass
GRATD - SoE reclaimed
its almost too much for one purrson to eat
GRATD - the groaning board
So, we'll not be doing that again will we fpu? *hard stare*
Twiglet Update
On to happier things. Here are Island Threads' fine Twiglets in full leaf in their fishbox and ready to move on
Island Threads
the first planting hole lined with soggy Stornoway Gazette
planting hole
a twiglet resplendant in its new home
twiglet resplendant
one day this will be a hedge protecting 6-foot fennel from vicious southerlies...purrhaps that's being a bit optimistic...but you never know.
nest year

Posted on Flying Cat at 15:56

Picture This - Natural Blondes on Show

Well, what a disappointment! Not a sign of known bloggers at either the Dounby or County Shows. The sun shone on Dounby and the rain rained on the County. However, undeterred, my parental units sallied fourth to bring back these pics. Very disappointed not to have been able to make the acquaintance of Hermit, having bottled out last year...especially as her flowing golden locks would have made a very nice contribution to this blog. And we're far too honest here at Anorak Towers to go pinching pics off other bloggers blogs...unlike some!
As I'm sure you are all aware, out there in the massive FC Fanbase (counted on the claws of one paw) there is a very strong Orkney connection with Blondie. I need hardly tell you that Debbie Harray is a Dounby lass...
alpaca blonde
at Dounby - an Andean blonde
false&sheepish blondes
and some bottle blondes...surely that's not natural? And yet...its hard to get to grips with the idea of a husky Orkney farmer clarting on the clairol...
barely blonde
this one's been around a bit too doubt Hanging on The Telephone...
butterly blonde
utterly butterly blonde prizewinners at Dounby Industrial Show
curd blonde
mmmmm...lemoncurdy blonde...Heart of Glass
bogstandard blondes
queueing blondes
straw blonde
stray blonde
a very pretty moo-blonde
sunbleached blonde...rather how I imagine Squidgy...
holy blonde
Skaill Kirk lime rendered blonde
sweet blonde in a meadow
maaa&baby blonde
at the County Show...Pretty Baby...goatee blonde
fetlock blonde
hoofing it with blonde feathers
strawberry blonde au fonde
blonde on blonde
Cats Protection Dog
oooo duckie!
blonde chick...I know he's a he, but one could hardly say blonde c**k, now could one? Standards have to be upheld...
probably pushing it a bit to call this one a strawberry blonde, but it would really stretch the bounds of credulity to include my very lovely self...
Aupres de ma blonde...qu'il fait bon dormir.
Posted on Flying Cat at 12:02

Over The Hill To Evie, Windylights & Wildflowers

What a very odd summer we are having. Dry in July. Empty butts in Rolling Acres having to be filled from the tap and left to settle; earth as dry as a witch's t*t; bipeds habitually strolling around in tee shirts and fpu glowing like a horse whilst hacking back the secondary jungle, which closed up most of the paths in the three weeks we were away. Now its August and, apart from being a bit grey and chilly (in honour of Show Week no doubt) still no real butt-filling rain.
On a glorious July day the parental units took the moor road to Evie, quite the nicest way to arrive there - looking one way, a breathtaking vista of moorland in bloom and the other, Aikerness and Rousay bathed in sunshine.
moorland with Hoy in the distance
yellow meads of asphodel
meadowsweet like Devon clotted cream
red clover
red curly doddies
ragged r
rantin rovin ragged robin
bell heather
heather belles
cool soft squishy wound dressing
cocks 'n' hens
angelica - easily distinguished from other umbellifers (which have been reclassified but who cares) by their cauliflower-heads
small yellow bgr
bog cotton
bog cotton
evie to aikerness
marram grass and Aikerness. Pu's would have stayed a while, but three small boys' high-pitched squawks made fpu grumpy, so off they went to somewhere quieter
rusty chains
take these chains...old tank traps
trees at Woodwick
woodwick road
road from Woodwick to Tingwall
woodwick road

Tingwall Ferry
Tingwall Ferry where parental units sat quietly on the rock armour
dec 07 windylights
the beauty of windylights in small numbers, Burger Hill


Dounby Show on Thursday. I'm sending the olds over with digicam to see if they can spot any islandbloggers. It better not rain, or they'll never get out of the craft tent...
Posted on Flying Cat at 12:14

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