Pussycat Palio

After a weekend without builders, the men are back at our finca in Mallorca. And they’ve increased in number. The foreman told us this morning that rain is forecast for later this week and they’re keen to ensure that we have at least the new lining on the whole roof, so that we don’t have any serious leaks indoors. So an extra pair of hands has been drafted in to speed up the process. And the decibel level of the conversation level has ratcheted up too. They’re speaking Arabic, so I’ve no idea what they’re talking about, but it sounds jolly lively.

A pillow of stones

As I write, the men have just finished their lunchtime siesta; after they’ve eaten their packed lunches, they stretch out on the ground and have a snooze. It really can’t be comfortable, with so many stones in our field, but they return to the job – and their ongoing conversation – with renewed vigour.

During their break, while things are quiet again, we catch up on any phone calls and snatch a bite of lunch outside, on the one part of the terraces that hasn’t been taken over by stacks of roof tiles. For a change, we’re eating alone: our family of outdoor cats heads for the hills as soon as the builders arrive. None of them is keen on strangers. We’ll not see them now until this evening, when all is quiet again.

In fine race form and waiting for nightfall.

And they’re off!

But we’re certainly hearing them. In the middle of the night. One or two of our outdoor cats have previously ventured up onto the roof, but now that the tiles are off and there’s a smooth flat surface up there, it’s become the venue for what sounds to us (beneath it) like the feline equivalent of the Palio di Siena horse race.

The cats are clearly having fun, even if I’m not really enjoying the disruption, dirt and the din. Still, I have tomorrow to look forward to: I’ll be out for a couple of hours, as I have a dental appointment. I never thought there’d come a day when I’d rather have a back tooth extracted than stay at home . . .

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