Aby-a-Day – 12 July: Sleeping in Vimmerby (Thursday Things)

Our friend Summer commented on yesterday’s post that it was nice to see Angel in a post. I do try to mix it up as much as possible, but it’s not always easy since Angel tends to avoid the spotlight.

Kalle has a really awesome Vimmerby bed from Mio. It’s a modernised version of the traditional box bed that dates back to the Middle Ages, and let me tell you, I would have LOVED to have a bed like this in high school!

angelkallesbedC06077

Seems that Angel likes Kalle’s bed, too! She hardly ever sleeps on our beds, so when she decided to hang out on Kalle’s bed, it was pretty awesome, and we were lucky to get photos of the rare event.

angelkallesbedC06081

It’s great to see her branch out. It’s been almost 10 years since I’ve had her, and she still acts like she did when I first brought her home. So to see her do something like this is so special. Good girl, Angel!

Aby-a-Day – 11 July: Wordless Wednesday (Angel on the balcony)

angelbalconyC08490

angelbalconyC08492

Aby-a-Day – 10 July: The Girl with the Aby and Singa Tattoo (Cartoon Tuesday)

You might recall a few weeks ago I was about to go in and get a magpie tattoo on my arm and plan my next tattoo with Linus, my new tattoo artist here in Slövde. Linus is amazing, and tomorrow I am going to get it coloured in. I can’t wait! Since the 21st, I’ve had a half-done, just black lines and shading. It’s going to be amazing to finally have it finished.

In the meantime, I have worked up two better-coloured versions of my original sketch. The one above was coloured in on my iPad Pro using pencil and an incredible app called Art Set which works well…except it hasn’t got layers. So I did more colouring using Photoshop…and the result is above.

Then I thought my rough-sketched maple leaves, pussy willows and cherry blossoms were kind of…lazy. So I found some Photoshop brushes and line art and created a better background. At least I have something to show Linus tomorrow during my appointment.

Aby-a-Day – 9 July: “Sometimes being a brother is even better than being a superhero” (Medical Monday)

The last time we all went to the vet, we encountered a gorgeous German Shepherd in the lobby. He was so huge compared to Lorelai!

rorydogvetC06060

But Rory was her usual fearless self.

rorydogvetC06058

In fact, she barely seemed to notice him at all. “Dog? What dog?”

freddyrorydogvetC06055

Alfred, on the other hand…

freddyvetC06054

…did not like the looks of that enormous predator at all.

freddyrorydogvetC06061

In fact, he put his body between the dog and Rory to protect her.

freddyrorydogvetC06065

The dog had the good sense to look appropriately intimidated.

freddyrorydogvetC06068

“Don’t worry, little sister. I won’t let this beast hurt you.” Not that Rory looks at all concerned.

freddydogvetC06069

The Shepherd was actually a well-trained tracking and guard dog, and he and his human volunteer with the canine unit at their local Hemvärnet battalion. Hemvärnet dogs are very disciplined, and he wouldn’t have hurt a kitten.

freddydogvetC06076

Freddy didn’t still didn’t trust him. The entire time we were there with that dog, he remained vigilant, protecting Rory from harm.

Aby-a-Day – 8 July: “Judge not, lest ye be judged” (Cat Show Cinema Sunday)

Last Saturday, as I posted, Lorelai made her first show appearance.

halfbroVäkC07530

What was interesting, though, was that her half brother Lord was being judged at the same time on the judging table next to ours. The ruddies and the blues were judged separately on Saturday, and together on Sunday.

halfbroVäkC07535

halfbroVäkC07539

It was fun to watch him be judged while Rory was being judged.

roryVäkjudgingC07546

roryVäkjudgingC07548

roryVäkjudgingC07553

roryVäkjudgingC07557

roryVäkjudgingC07564

Rory is a cat show natural! She was fearless, playful, and utterly charming.

roryVäkjudgingC07566

The judge, Marie Westerlund, actually breeds Abys (her cattery name is S*Rackarkattens) and she fell in love with Rory.

roryVäkjudgingC07570

roryVäkjudgingC07574

roryVäkjudgingC07578

roryVäkjudgingC07579

In FIFe, the owner displays the cat to the judge, and the judge talks to the owner and explains what she’s looking for and how the cat meets the standard. It’s a bit different from CFA, where of course the judges know who the owners are, but there’s a sort of invisible wall of tacit anonymity. A show judge is not supposed to see or even know what cat is entered in the show. After the cat is judged, it’s okay to hang out with the judge. Also, in CFA, judges dress up. Men wear ties, and women wear nice suits and dresses. In FIFe, the judges seem to wear whatever they want. Men wearing jeans and a polo shirt is not uncommon.

roryVäkjudgingC07589

roryVäkjudgingC07593

roryVäkjudgingC07602

roryVäkjudgingC07608

roryVäkjudgingC07613

Marie seemed to examine Rory for ages

halfbroVäkC07617

halfbroVäkC07621

Meanwhile, Rory’s half-brother was still on his judging table.

roryhalfbroVäkC07632

roryhalfbroVäkC07651

roryhalfbroVäkC07654

Then something odd happened. Rory’s judge went over to talk to Lord’s judge! I hadn’t ever seen that happen before. Not sure what they were talking about, but it was cool to see them close together!

roryVäkjudgingC07661

roryVäkjudgingC07666

roryVäkjudgingC07670

roryVäkjudgingC07677

roryVäkjudgingC07680

roryVäkjudgingC07681

roryVäkjudgingC07683

roryjudgingC07685

As you can see, Rory is a natural star. And you can see how smitten Marie was by her.

I also shot a movie of her being judged. As I said, she was on the table a really long time!

Aby-a-Day – 7 July: “Once you get a kitten, the natural thing you do is take a billion photos” (Cat Show Saturday)

Because of this blog’s hiatus, I have an incredible backlog of photos to go through.

roryVäkC07878

Lorelai is not making getting through the backlog any easier.

roryVäkC07480

roryVäkC07481

roryVäkC07483

roryVäkC07484

roryVäkC07486

roryVäkC07487

roryVäkC07490

roryVäkC07491

roryVäkC07492

roryVäkC07493

roryVäkC07495

roryVäkC07498

I mean, LOOK at her. She is stupidly photogenic, isn’t she?

roryVäkC07501

Oh, and yeah…she was so totally stressed out by being a showcat. Can’t you tell?

Aby-a-Day – 6 July: “Our greatest glory is not in never falling, but in rising every time we fall”

It’s common in Sweden for apartment complexes to have several rug-beating frames so that residents can beat their carpets.

rorybjornrugbeaterC06908

rorybjornrugbeaterC06909

roryrugbeaterC06910

We have one right outside our apartment, and of course Lorelai had to jump up to the top of it.

roryrugbeaterC06911

roryrugbeaterC06913

She was walking the galvanised steel tightrope walk pretty well there for a while…

roryrugbeaterC06916

…but it just takes one misstep.

roryrugbeaterC06917

…and then your paws don’t behave…

roryrugbeaterC06918

…and after that, the rest of your paws second-guess themselves…

roryrugbeaterC06919

…and once that happens…

roryrugbeaterC06920

roryrugbeaterC06921

roryrugbeaterC06922

roryrugbeaterC06923

roryrugbeaterC06924

…yeah, you’re gonna fall.

roryrugbeaterC06925

So the art is in falling gracefully. Or at least, non-embarrassingly…

roryrugbeaterC06927

roryrugbeaterC06928

roryrugbeaterC06936

Nailed it!

roryzakrugbeaterC06937

roryzakrugbeaterSC06938

“Okay, so…that was fun. Now what?”

Aby-a-Day – 5 July: Alfred and Markis (Thursday Things)

Alfred is a very protective big brother. And free whatever reason, he has decided that Markis from upstairs was a threat to Lorelai.

freddymarkisC04867

Of course, Markis was just outside minding his own business…

freddymarkisC04873

…but when he heard Freddy growling he decided to let discretion be the better part of valour.

freddymarkisC04876

He tried to hide amongst the bicycles, but Freddy followed him…

freddymarkisC04878

…growling…

freddymarkisC04880

…with his tail puffed and his hackles raised! When Jacoby and Markis meet, they just sniff each other and Markis will hiss and growl. I am not sure what Freddy sees that Jake doesn’t.

freddymarkisC04885

This toddler, though. He kept wanting to pet the kitties. The snarling, growling, hissing, clearly angry and preoccupied kitties. I tried to get him to move away, but I don’t think he understands English or Swedish yet, and his mother was right there (you can see her in the background), so I thought her maternal instincts would kick in.

freddymarkisC04888

…NOPE. So of course the kid gets too close, Markis hisses and lunges, kid sit-falls onto his bum and starts crying and only then does she intervene. He wasn’t hurt, but he could have been.

freddymarkisC04891

After that, Markis was done. He trotted off across the grass.

freddymarkisC04895

Freddy kept an eye on him for a while.

freddymarkisC04897

Finally, he decided that Markis was far enough away and relaxed.

freddymarkisC04899

A little later, however, Markis moved to the base of one of our trees.

freddymarkisC04902

Freddy did not like this at all and started stalking Makis again even as Markis moved out into the field.

freddymarkisC04904

Freddy kept walking towards Markis until he was what Freddy felt was a safe distance away.

freddymarkisC04911

Poor Markis! All he wanted was to enjoy the sun and grass and maybe catch a mouse. It’s a good thing Freddy doesn’t go outside without a human on a leash!

Aby-a-Day – 4 July: Wordless Wednesday (Nom, nom, NOM)

roryNOMväkC07699

roryNOMväkC07700

roryNOMväkC07701

roryNOMväkC07702

Other People’s Singas: Izaak’s brother Joop the victorious (Super Singas)

While we were with Lorelai at her first show in Sweden, Izaak’s brother Joop was at the Wystawa Kotów Rasowych in Sopot, Poland.

I’m not sure exactly how the awards translate, but he did very well indeed, and I think this was his very first show, too. You can see him in action on the judging table

here.

Unlike CFA, when you win a Best in Show you get not only a rosette but also prizes – usually food and cat accessories.

Here is Joop and all his winnings. That trophy is bigger than he is!

And if you are wondering why we didn’t take Zak along with Rory to the show this past weekend, well, that’s because while he is registered in FIFe, he is registered as a Polish cat, not a Swedish cat. He needs to have his details entered into Sverak‘s database as my cat before I can enter him. So as soon as that happens…we’ll see if he can do as well as his littermate!

Aby-a-Day – 3 July: Paw & (dis)Order: Abyssinial Intent (Cartoon Tuesday)

In memory of cousin Taz, I am re-running his and Jacoby’s best cartoon appearance: Paw & (dis)Order: Abyssinial Intent.

abycartoon39

It started as a random comment at the Mansfield show in 2012 and grew into…well, this. Meg had brought a little girl called Tiger Lili, who had Jake and Taz all het up. So she became the star of the cartoon as well. Taz and Jake were wearing collars because Meg had gotten them both collars to wear; Taz’s had a sort of flower on it.

abycartoon40

Originally I was thinking they’d be Briscoe and <aCurtis, but they ended up being more like Goren and Eames (Taz being Eames, of course).

abycartoon41

Annnd…I couldn’t resist throwing in a David Caruso joke, because who doesn’t love crime procedural mash-ups?

Aby-a-Day – 2 July: Silverpelt has two new stars tonight

Sad day today. Our good friend Molly’s husband, Don, died this morning. “Don was the brains behind Team Aby and the enforcer,” Molly told me. Meg said, “I still remember how Don made me laugh with his plans to ‘rough up’ Wain (Harding) in back of a showhall.” I only got to meet him once, when I went down to Florida with my ex and we met up at – what else? – a cat show. He was a sweetheart, though; Molly’s birthday post was actually a result of him contacting me.

This is what he sent Meg: “Message from Don re. Molly. Could you help by contacting your Aby-a-Day people or something?

Hi Meg. As you may or may not know Molly has a couple of events happening this month. One being her 80 birthday next Friday the 16th and the other will be the end of working career when she leaves her job on the 31st. Since she considers her friends in CFA her extended family. I am trying to create a birthday greetings blitz with her friends. I solicit your help with letting her friends in CFA know. Since she considers you a great friend I thought you could help in this effort getting the word around. More to follow. – The Donald.” (How funny is it that he referred to himself that way?) And then in an email to me, he wrote, “Oh by the way to get all the way across the ocean you have to type loud.” You can read Don’s obituary here.

As if that wasn’t enough, Jacoby’s cousin Taz (aka GC, GPD, NW Anubis Taz Mania) also died today after a two-month battle with pancreatitis.

stamford-tazE_3947

Taz and Jake were more than cousins. They were show companions. We shared hotel rooms with Meg and Taz on more than one occasion.

taztux-groton0305

Jake even lent Taz his clothes!

meg-taz1stIMG_7734

Meg and Taz recently came back to become, among other things, 15th best Premier in CFA this past show season.

My heart has joined the Thousand, for my friends stopped running today.

Aby-a-Day – 1 July: Go Team Aby! (Cat Show Sunday)

This post is late, and short…because coming home from a show is hard. Almost more work than the show itself. So I am afraid there’s not much more than the basics tonight…

roryjudgingVäkC08095

Lorelai’s judge today was Ulrika Eriksson. She was the judge who thought Logan was too thin; she also judged Jacoby in the Senior class at one show. Yesterday, the blue Abys and the ruddy Abys were seen by different judges, but today all the Abys were judged by the same judge. Which meant the ruddies and the blues had to compete against each other.

roryjudgingVäkC08081

Rory was her playful self on the table…

roryjudgingVäkC08073

…not that the judge was paying much attention.

nomineringVäkC08155

When it came down to the Kat. 4 nominations, it was Rory and Classy, the birthday doppelgangers…

balinesenomineringVäkC08140

…and a squirmy seal Balinese. The final decision was painfully close…

nomineringVäkC08148

…Rory had colour and type, and Classy had eyes and ears. In the end, Classy took the day.

roryclassyVäkC08112

We stopped by her cage to pay our respects.

roryclassyVäkC08115

Any day an Aby wins anything at a show is a good day (And, really…having two cats regard each other from a small distance at a show without any hostility whatsoever is refreshing, to say the least)!

classypanelVäkC08170

Classy was in the final against a Cornish Rex, and that Russian Blue I mentioned yesterday.
I think we all were surprised when Classy, and not the Russian Blue, was named Best in Show, Class 12, Kat. 4.

blueabycongratsVäkC08187

Of course, in the end, we’re all cat-geek friends.

classyBIVVäkC08196

Classy admired her winnings from her benching cage.

classyBIVVäkC08248

Her breeder, Susanna, took photos of her with her trophy.

classyBIVVäkC08249

“Any food in this bowl-shaped thingy?”

susannaclassyBIVVäkC08263

susannaclassyBIVVäkC08271

Congrats, Classy and Susanna…Until we meet again!