It was a pleasant afternoon. We imbibed the odd glass of something and reminisced over past adventures, like falling in a canal in Venice, waltzing in the Vienna Stadtpark (well one of us was waltzing, the tall one was getting pushed around) staying in a youth hostel in the black District in New Orleans, and catching crabs in Karachi. The years stripped away and we were taming the world again.

Still glowing with the warmth of the memories, or something, I decided I could climb up the two steps to the front door without hanging onto anything except a large bag of shopping. Big mistake.

Somehow I went into a backflip with half twist, forget the Pike, and speared into a brick wall. The Olympic diving team would have been proud of me. Unfortunately, the recovery left something to be desired. Shopping went one way, handbag containing mobile another, and I was flat on my back going nowhere. It was just after dusk and Melbourne was having a cold spell. I was the only one home for the next two days.

I laid there for a while, doing nothing but checking for broken bones, flowing blood, and slowly freezing to death. This is not a good look. Some sort of action was required, and best were done while the mishap adrenalin was still providing some anaesthetic.

With one mighty struggle, I made it onto my front, and from there managed to get up with the aid of the cat’s chair. After collecting the scattered bags, I got inside and flopped onto the bed, clothes groceries and etcetera. Eureka, I was still alive.

The injured bits made themselves felt over the next few days. It was interesting times. I learnt how often I used the fingers on the non preferred hand, particularly the ones that were obviously entangled in the load of shopping while I was flinging things around, and there was probably a reason we’re born with two legs, as they nicely balance each other. One part of the skull which had become corrugated, kept warning me not to lie on it.

But someone or something, came to my rescue. It was the cat. I woke up in the middle of the night to find him draped around my head like a Davy Crocket hat. Did he know that I was hurt and he was keeping the damaged bit warm? What a thoughtful cat, even if his tail did go into windscreen wiper mode across my face whenever he thought I should feed him.

Then the situation got worse. A few nights ago I woke to find him licking my head as if I was a kitten he needed to groom. Waking up to a head full of saliva is not the most pleasant way to start the day, so I insisted he desist, but the damage was already done. Or was it undone?

Later, reading a paper over coffee, I came across an article “Kissing it Better Does Work.” (No writer was acknowledged) It claimed that saliva has properties that can boost recovery. It contains a protein, Histalin 1, which reputedly boosts the formation of blood vessels. This is why injuries in the mouth heal quicker than on any other part of the body. Did Dr. Fred Cat know about that when he decided to bathe my head in the treacly substance? Whatever, the head is healing nicely.

Now I’ve got a great idea. If I could just get someone to hold him while I collect his saliva, I could sell it for a fortune. There would be a rush for this new medicine. Cat Spit (Patent Pending) would be flying out the window.

I have discussed the matter with Fred. He told me not to even think about it or he’d give me something requiring more than saliva to fix it.” That cat just has no financial sense. 

 Brenda Richards

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