Position: 41°15’45″N 13°44’46″E
Cat Sitting

For the past couple of weeks we have been cat sitting in Minturno. All three of us. Marlon, ever the charmer, has learned to live with cats. More or less. In his youth, he paid little attention to moggies, preferring to torment dogs twice his size. As he’s gotten older he’s gotten bolder and barks at almost every living creature. We spent the first two days deprogramming him. Hoo, the most domestic of Pat and Melinda’s three cats, helped out.

Now, Marlon no longer barks at cats and avoids Hoo. Not out of respect, I’m sure. More because he is trying to do the right thing, and he wants to please us. Hoo on the other hand is curious about Marlon, but only approaches on his own terms. Rapprochement is the word of the day. We occasionally have three cat nights when all the pussies are indoors. More often it’s in ones and twos.

Turns out Hoo is affectionate to people, but pretty much a git to his four-pawed housemates, Nebbia and Strice. Nebbia is a little less shy than Strice, but gets hissed at by Hoo when there’s food around. So, Hoo dines in the living room and Nebbia and Strice dine in the kitchen. Given the falling tide of cat food, every kitty is getting enough calories. Even the rogue black cat that sometimes tries sneaking in (and we summarily shoo away) maintains their figure.


Our temporary accommodation comes with stunning views. Looking due south over the Gulf of Gaeta, the dining room’s picture window captures sunrise and sunset this time of year. The terrace upstairs gets the full solar Monty all year round.

I’ve always loved timelapse films. There’s something about seeing things that you can’t see any other way. Clouds shifting and swirling that we only glimpse when conditions are right, usually just before a violent storm. A couple of times in this short video you can see the lower clouds flowing east, the high clouds moving south, and smoke on the ground drifting north. As sailors we’ve experienced the frustration of surface winds moving in the opposite direction from the wind 60 feet up the mast. I set my GoPro to capture one frame every five seconds. One second of this video comprises 29.97 frames. You can do the rest of the math and figure out how long the camera’s battery lasted.




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