This post is not about cats

It’s about walking around my neighborhood in December, and in fact for much of 2020. It’s about enjoying unfolding scenes and lovely weather and good company. It’s about a new year full of promise, and a pause before it really gets rolling.

Sometimes, yes, there are cats. They’re purely incidental.

Sometimes I listen to a mediation tape to remind myself to notice my feet and my legs and the earth that’s rising up to meet me. It takes my attention out of my wild head space. Other times I walk with Ramon, and we tell each other stuff in Spanish. Many times I’m Walking With Purpose – going to find/buy something, usually food-related these days, but not always.

I can’t wait till we can travel again, so I can come and visit you, and you can come and visit me. It’s been a long year of confinement, and I know I’ve had it easy. I was even fortunate enough to find a new friend this year. She is American and works in a project like the ones I work on. She took me to an art opening in a building under construction. Also, she has a dog that is smaller than most cats.

La Marsa is my neighborhood in Greater Tunis, along the north edge of the city and up against the Mediterranean Sea. Somehow the view never gets old. Even on the worst weather days there is someone out walking along the water’s edge, or fishing, stand-up-paddling, surfing, or sitting in the sand. There is definitely always someone in every coffee shop, too – it’s a social place, so lockdowns hit the scene pretty hard at times. But people were mostly obedient and resilient, and the virus continues to run its course but without knocking the place to its knees.

Commonly, in the morning the sea is still as glass. But there are days… and a few people hold onto wetsuits and surfboards for just such an occasion.

Curiosity and cats

I’d be remiss if I didn’t include this series. The kitty was back the next day, so curiosity had no adverse effects I’m aware of.

And talk about remiss: “my” outdoor kitty Mogui has made plenty of appearances lately, hanging out in the jasmine over our entryway until I come out. Then she hollers at me and I feed her. This, despite her having been adopted by one of the neighbors, and fully fed and cared for. Never-you-mind, says Mogui. She knows my day is always better when I get to give her something to eat.

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